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Nursing practice in sexually transmitted infections and HIV in British Columbia : report of survey findings

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Title: Nursing practice in sexually transmitted infections and HIV in British Columbia : report of survey findings
Author: Bungay, Vicky
Subject Keywords Public Health Nursing -- British Columbia
Issue Date: 2010-12
Publicly Available in cIRcle 2011-12-13
Abstract: During 2009-2010 investigators from the BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) and the School of Nursing at the University of British Columbia, in collaboration with regional health authorities, First Nations communities and private service organizations undertook a project aimed at understanding the nature and scope of public health nursing practice in the area of sexually transmitted infection including HIV prevention and control. The final data set included responses from 314 public health nurses. Data sources consisted primarily of census data from the College of Registered Nurses and a self-administered 62-item questionnaire. A total of 576 public health nurses working in STI including HIV prevention and control were identified through analysis of employing agencies identified within the CRNBC census data. The questionnaire was designed to assess the demographic characteristics of public health nurses, the client populations served, workload distribution, clinical practice activities, nursing practice resources, and continuing education needs. The majority of nurses were baccalaureate-prepared women with an average age of 44. The nurses, had been practicing for an average of 18 years, nine of which were in STI and HIV prevention and control. Approximately half of the nurses worked on a full-time basis. Community/public health centres in urban settings were the most common site of employment. On average, nurses spent 28% of their work in the area of STI and HIV care. Women were reported as recipients of nursing care more frequently than any other client population. The majority of nurses (76%) provided care in both STI and HIV prevention and control and spent at least half of their time in direct client care activities. Approximately 78% of nurses undertook STI and HIV testing. Seventy-four percent of the nurses provide clients with medication as part of STI treatment and oral antibiotics were the most commonly administered and dispensed medications. Emergency contraceptives and oral contraceptives were also administered by over 70% of the nurses. Referrals to other health service providers was common practice with physicians, abortion services, mental health care, and community organizations identified as the most common sources of referrals. Nurses were active in the reporting process for reportable infections and regularly engaged in health education activities primarily at the level of individual clients, although community-based education practice was reported by half the participants. Public health nurses were predominantly satisfied with many elements of their work, particularly in relation to direct client care interactions. Nurses were less satisfied with the amount of administrative support they obtained in their work setting, the physical space in which they worked, and their limited opportunities for continuing education and professional development activities. This project represents a detailed analysis of nursing practice in STI prevention and control in British Columbia and will provide an essential baseline for future investigations pertaining to the outcomes associated with legislated changes in nursing practice in the field of STI prevention and control.
Affiliation: Applied Science, Faculty ofNursing, School of
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2429/39662
Peer Review Status: Unreviewed
Scholarly Level: Faculty

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