Nurses’ attitude towards the care of the elderly: Implications for gerontological nursing training

Modupe O. Oyetunde, Olufisayo O. Ojo, Lucia Y. Ojewale


Background: Nurses are in contact with the elderly at different levels of care. However, observations show that relational gaps exist resulting in negative elderly patients’ outcomes. This study aimed at exploring the attitude of nurses towards the care of the elderly in two selected hospitals (University College Hospital and Ring Road State hospital) in Ibadan, Oyo state.

Methods: The study was a descriptive survey. Questionnaire was administered to randomly selected and consented 130 nurses in the two selected hospitals and was retrieved immediately after being completed. The questionnaires had five sections. Section A covered socio-demographic data. Section B, C and D consisted of questions which explored respondents’ attitude towards the care of elderly; staffing ratio and care of the elderly; factors influencing care of the elderly and Section E questions were on knowledge of aging process. The completed questionnaire was coded and analyzed using frequencies and percentages

Result: This study shows that 73.0% of the respondents agreed that elderly are difficult to care for. Over 80% agreed that effective care of the elderly requires special training. Also, more than 90% believed hospitals should have special wards (geriatric ward) for effective care of the elderly. Respondents showed positive attitude towards the care of the elderly and good knowledge of aging process.

Conclusion: Effective care of the elderly requires special training, provision of geriatric ward, adequate staffing to reduce stress and improve quality care. There is need for continuing education on quality care to improve nursing practice in the care of the elderly.

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Journal of Nursing Education and Practice

ISSN 1925-4040 (Print)   ISSN 1925-4059 (Online)

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