Predictors of Readiness for Disaster Management Skills Among Hospital Nurses

Friday, 28 July 2017

Chia-Huei Lin, PhD, RN
Nursing department; School of Nursing and School of Medicine, Department of Nursing, Tri-Service General Hospital Songshan Branch; School of Nursing and School of Medicine, National Defense Medical Center, Taipei, Taiwan

Purpose: Continuous disasters have been threatening people’s lives in recent years. However, studies regarding the readiness for disaster management competency among nurses remain limited. Therefore, this study investigated the predictors of readiness for disaster management competency among nurses.

Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted. Stratified random sampling was used to recruit eligible cases from 1,197 nurses, who had been registered nurses for at least 3 months in a military medical centre from northern Taiwan. In addition, all male nurses and military nurses were recruited. Data were collected on readiness for disaster management competency using a 40-item, reliable, well-valid, and self-administered questionnaire with four domains (preparedness competence, self-protection, emergency response, and clinical nursing skill). Linear regression models were applied to explore the predictors of readiness for disaster management skills among nurses.

Results: Among the recruited 365 registered nurses who were 32.6 years of age (SD = 8.04), there was an average 12.6 years of work in nursing. The majority (75.9%) had a Bachelor’s degree or higher in nursing. Eighty percent (n = 292) were civilian nurses without military ranks. Thirty-four percent worked in critical care units or an emergency room. Some participants (n = 14, 19.5%) had previously received disaster-related training; 3.8% had previous disaster nursing experience and 13.4% had been deployed for disaster assistance. When adjusting for potential confounding factors the length of nursing work and previously received disaster training are significantly associated with preparedness competency and self-protection competency, respectively. Length of nursing work (p < .001), educational level (p = .02), working unit (p < .001), and previously received disaster-related training (p = .01) were associated with emergency response competency and clinical nursing skill competency, respectively. Regarding overall disaster management competency, participants with longer length of nursing work (p < .001), with a higher educational level (Bachelor’s degree and above) (p = .03), working at critical care units or an emergency room (p=.02), and having previously received disaster training (p<.001), were associated better disaster nursing competency.

Conclusion: Our study indicates that disaster-related training is recommended to be included in continuous nursing education, and preparing nurses to become critical care nurses helps to improve their own readiness for disaster management competency.