Background: This study assessed South Carolina nurses' perceived knowledge of emergency preparedness to gain a better understanding of their learning needs and to prioritize continuing education and training efforts based on these needs.
Methods: Boone's programming model concept of planning provided the framework for this study, which used a descriptive correlational design and the Emergency Preparedness Information Questionnaire (EPIQ). Data from 207 eligible survey participants were analyzed.
Results: Nurses showed an overall low level of self-reported knowledge of emergency preparedness. Nurses reported being most familiar with triage and least familiar with clinical decision making in epidemiology and biological agents.
Conclusion: By prioritizing learning needs based on a needs assessment and accommodating learning preferences, a systematic and planned approach to educating nurses about this extremely important topic can be implemented to significantly strengthen nurses' ability to respond to disaster events competently and effectively.
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