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Training needs analysis of nurses caring for individuals an intellectual disability and or autism spectrum disorder in a forensic service

Dominic Burke (Irish Health Service Executive, Dublin, Ireland)
Angela Cocoman (School of Nursing, Psychotherapy and Community Health, Dublin City University, Dublin, Ireland)

Journal of Intellectual Disabilities and Offending Behaviour

ISSN: 2050-8824

Article publication date: 4 February 2020

Issue publication date: 24 February 2020

726

Abstract

Purpose

Examining the education and training needs of forensic nurses is paramount as services move from the older institutions to new care settings. The purpose of this study was to identify Irish Forensic nurses perceived deficits in their knowledge and skills to assist them to provide effective seamless care for individuals with an intellectual disability within their forensic mental health service, so that appropriate training could be provided.

Design/methodology/approach

Training needs analysis (TNA) procedures are used as a way of establishing the continuing processional development of staff, as they seek to identify the gaps between the knowledge and skills of an individual and the need for further training. A training needs tool developed by Hicks and Hennessy (2011) was used and completed by nurses working in an Irish forensic mental health service. A total of 140 surveys were circulated and 74 were completed (51 per cent response).

Findings

The top priority training needs identified were for additional training in research and audit and in the use of technology. Other self-identified training needs included additional training in behavioural management for challenging behaviour, understanding mental health and intellectual disability and dual diagnosis, training in enhancing communication skills and how to work with patients who have an intellectual disability patients specific training on autistic spectrum disorders and a guide and template for advance individual care planning and for caring for the physical health needs and promoting the physical health needs of these patients.

Originality/value

Despite there being a vast range of training issues identified, the majority of nurses appear to have a clear idea of their training needs to ensure the provision of seamless care for individuals with an intellectual disability within a forensic mental health setting. This TNA has identified the specific needs of nursing staff working at different positions across the interface of intellectual disability and forensic mental health care.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors wish to thank the Director of Nursing and management team who facilitated this study and to nurses those who participated to this TNA.

Citation

Burke, D. and Cocoman, A. (2018), "Training needs analysis of nurses caring for individuals an intellectual disability and or autism spectrum disorder in a forensic service", Journal of Intellectual Disabilities and Offending Behaviour, Vol. 11 No. 1, pp. 9-22. https://doi.org/10.1108/JIDOB-10-2019-0024

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

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