Learning Objective 1: After this presentation participants will understand and empathize with the lived experience of nurses who are addicted to drugs.
Learning Objective 2: Participants will be able to apply research to their own practice as educators, by incorporating realistic nurse addiction content into their curricula.
Methods: In this qualitative study, interviews were conducted exploring the lived experiences of nurses who are addicted. Observation techniques were also employed. Data analysis was then completed and themes were identified that were common among the participants in the study.
Results: The study provides insight into the way actual nurse addicts feel about their addictions, and how they experience life as recovering addicts. Five themes have been identified and are as follows: 1) Drug addiction decreases self-esteem; 2) Fear related to drug use; 3) Control issues with excessive working; 4) Belief it would never happen to them; and 5) Hope and desire to have their experience help others
Conclusion: Nurse addiction is often a dark, secretive subject that is ignored. This study brings the subject to light, and will hopefully change educators’ perceptions of nurse addiction. Then educators can take a more accurate perspective on nurse addiction and incorporate them into their curricula.
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