Are Nurses Prepared for a Radiological Disaster?: Assessing the Knowledge of Nursing Students to Support the Need of Integrating Radiological/Disaster Content into Nursing Curricula

Sunday, 27 July 2014: 8:30 AM

Cary Brown, MSN, BSN, RN
Department of Nursing, University of West Florida, Pensacola, FL

Purpose: The purpose of this project is to provide further evidence of the need for integrating radiological disaster preparedness content into nursing education curricula by assessing current knowledge of radiological emergency preparedness among licensed and pre-licensed nursing students using the Emergency Preparedness Information Questionnaire (EPIQ) survey revised for radiological emergencies

Methods: Undergraduate licensed and pre-licensed nursing students attending the University of West Florida completed the survey (N=60). Pre-licensed students received a radiation instructional intervention and completed the survey post-intervention.

Results: Nursing students have a low level of self-reported knowledge of radiological emergency preparedness. Pre-licensed students had a greater awareness of preparedness for a radiological disaster after the intervention.

Conclusion:  The inclusion of the radiation content in a class lecture can significantly prepare nursing students for a radiological emergency as demonstrated by improved post-intervention survey results. Low pre-intervention EPIQ scores and high post-intervention scores suggest there is a need to incorporate radiological/disaster content into nursing education curricula.