Aim: Previous research has documented the widespread use of antipsychotic drugs by nursing staff with older persons, although less is known about the knowledge that nurses actually have about these drugs. The purpose of this exploratory, descriptive study was to survey a sample of UK gerontological nurses from different work settings on their knowledge of antipsychotic drugs.Methods: An exploratory descriptive study design was utilised, whereby a sample of nursing staff was given a questionnaire developed to determine knowledge about antipsychotic drugs and their use with older persons. Questionnaires were distributed to 100 nursing staff, including registered general nurses, registered mental nurses, state enrolled nurses, nursing assistants and care assistants. Of the 100 questionnaires distributed, 62 were returned and 57 were completed substantially enough for data analysis.Results: Descriptive statistics including frequencies and means were calculated for demographic variables and the questionnaire responses. Results indicated that the use of antipsychotic drugs within the psychiatric hospital setting was substantial, with 43.7% of patients receiving antipsychotic drugs, for an average length of time of 1.8 years. Conclusions: Nursing staff participants from all three work settings revealed a number of significant knowledge gaps, particularly with regard to appropriate indications for antipsychotic drugs with older persons and the side‐effects of antipsychotic drugs. Summary: This paper adds new information regarding the use of antipsychotic drugs in the nursing care of older people.
Armstrong‐Esther, C., Hagen, B., Smith, C. and Snelgrove, S. (2008), "An exploratory study of nurses' knowledge of antipsychotic drug use with older persons", Quality in Ageing and Older Adults, Vol. 9 No. 1, pp. 29-40. https://doi.org/10.1108/14717794200800005Download as .RIS
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