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Research ArticleOpen Access

The Effects of an Educational Intervention on Emergency Nurses’ Attitude, Knowledge, and Care Behaviors toward Older Adults

Volume 1 - Issue 7

Denise Cadle Rhew1*, Susan Letvak2 and Thomas P McCoy3

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    • 1Clinical Nurse Specialist, Research Chair Cone Health, USA
    • 2Professor, UNC Greensboro School of Nursing, USA
    • 3Clinical Associate Professor, the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, USA

    *Corresponding author: Denise Cadle Rhew, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Research Chair, Cone Health, Greensboro NC, USA; Email:

Received: November 11, 2017;   Published: December 14, 2017

DOI: 10.26717/BJSTR.2017.01.000593

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Purpose: To explore the effect of an educational intervention (Geriatric Workshop) on attitudes and knowledge of emergency department (ED) nurses toward the older adult patient and their intention to change their care behaviors toward this population in the emergency department. Two instruments were used for this study: Kogan’s Attitude toward Old People and Palmore’s Facts of Aging Quiz 1.

Setting/Sample: Sixty-seven ED nurses from five emergency departments in one hospital system participated in this study. A total of 44 ED nurses were in the experimental group and 23 ED nurses participated in the control group.

Methodology: Both the experimental and control group received three on-line surveys measuring knowledge, attitudes, and behavioral changes toward older adults. The experimental group attended a Geriatric workshop (educational intervention) and completed the on-line pre-survey and immediate post survey at the workshop in a reserved computer room. The control group completed an on-line pre-survey and immediate post-survey at their convenience on the same day the geriatric workshop was being offered. Four weeks post geriatric workshop offering both the experimental and control group received an on-line post-post survey. Repeated-measures ANOVA were performed to analyze between-group differences over time.

Results: Trends over time improved for the educational intervention group relative to comparison group in Kogan’s Attitude toward Old People and Palmore’s Facts of Aging, but were not statistically significant in repeated-measures ANOVA (all group  time interaction p > 0.10). Conclusion and Implication for Practice: A short 4-hour educational intervention was successful in improving ED nurses’ knowledge, attitudes, and care behaviors toward older adults. ED leadership needs to support education related to older adults in order to continue to improve outcomes in the fastest growing population.

Abbreviations: ED: Emergency Department; TPB: Theory of Planned Behavior; IRB: Institutional Review Board; KOP: Kogan’s Attitudes toward Older People; PFAQ: Palmore’s Facts of Aging Quiz

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