JOURNAL ARTICLE

Attitudes, knowledge, and proficiency in relation to organ donation: a questionnaire-based analysis in donor hospitals in northern Denmark

L Bøgh, M Madsen
Transplantation Proceedings 2005, 37 (8): 3256-7
16298563
The aim of this study was to assess knowledge, attitudes, and proficiency in relation to organ donation among staff members of intensive care units (ICUs) in donor hospitals, and possibly identify areas for improvement. The investigation was carried out as a collaboration between the transplant center and appointed key persons in all 17 ICUs in 15 hospitals in northern Denmark. A total of 1168 structured questionnaires were distributed to the health care professionals in the ICUs in the region; 689 were returned, giving a response rate of 59%. In general, there is a positive attitude among health care professionals toward organ donation. However, a considerable fraction of 11% declares to be against organ donation. Only 49% of the ICU health care professionals are willing to donate their own organs after death. By comparison, 74% of the general Danish population are willing to donate organs after death. Doctors are more positive toward organ donation than the nursing staff. Thus, 95% of the doctors are positive to organ donation compared to 81% of the nurses; 70% of the doctors will donate own organs after death compared to 45% of the nurses. Further, the survey demonstrates as expected a significant lack of experience in organ donation. Our data show a considerable need for more education and training, especially on how to inform and support the donor relatives and how to identify potential donors. The survey also discloses a substantial need for information regarding the results of transplantation.

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