Introduction: Pressure ulcers (PU) are a major, but preventable health problem in all health settings, but especially in intensive care units (ICUs). This study aimed to investigate the knowledge, attitude, and practice (KAP) of Iranian ICU nurses related to the prevention of PU.
Methods: In a cross-sectional study, data obtained from 183 ICU nurses working in four hospitals affiliated to Mazandaran University of Medical Sciences, Sari, Iran were evaluated. The study was conducted from July to October 2020. Data were collected using a four-part questionnaire including demographic characteristics, Pieker Pressure Ulcer Knowledge Test (PPUKT), Attitude toward Pressure Ulcer Prevention (APUP) tool, and the practice of nurses related to the prevention of PU.
Findings: The mean scores of KAP of ICU nurses toward PU prevention were 70.57 (SD = 13.51), 52.82 (SD = 6.16), and 22.44 (SD = 5.20), respectively. There was a positive correlation between nurses' attitude and practice (r = 0.232, P = 0.002), and a negative correlation between knowledge and attitude (r = -0.156, P = 0.035) of nurses regarding PU prevention. Additionally, a positive correlation was found between nurses' years of working experience in ICU and their knowledge regarding PU prevention (r = 0.159, P = 0.032).
Conclusion: According to the results of the present study, the level of KAP of Iranian ICU nurses related to PU prevention were desirable, positive, and relatively desirable. Therefore, nurse managers and policymakers should try to eliminate the main barriers such as heavy workload, inadequate nurse staffing, and lack of appropriate guidelines for PU prevention which consequently affect the practice of ICU nurses in the prevention of PU.
Keywords: Attitude; Intensive care unit; Knowledge; Nurses; Practice; Pressure ulcer.
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