Attitudes of Hong Kong nurses toward cadaveric organ donation

Y M Chan, P L Po-lin, W K Lee, N H Wong
ANNA Journal 1997, 24 (4): 413-9; discussion 420-1

OBJECTIVES: The objectives of this descriptive correlational study were to (a) examine Hong Kong nurses' attitudes toward cadaveric organ donation, and (b) determine if there were any relationships among the nurses' attitudes and their behaviors, or knowledge regarding cadaveric organ donation, or their experience in caring for cadaveric organ donors/recipients, in order to identify any obstacles in promoting organ donation in Hong Kong.

DESIGN: The Bidigare and Oermann (1991) Questionnaire and Chiu et al. (1991) Questionnaire were modified to a five-section questionnaire used in the study.

SAMPLE/SETTING: The sample consisted of 60 registered nurses from the intensive care unit (ICU), operation room (OR), or renal and surgical units in one of the public hospitals under the Hong Kong Hospital Authority.

METHODS: Questionnaires were given to the selected participants through their wards. The registered nurses returned completed questionnaires to their wards which were collected by the researchers.

RESULTS: Most of the nurses (84.6%) supported the concept of cadaveric donation but only 23.5% had signed the donor card. It also revealed that nurses attitudes and behaviors regarding cadaveric organ donation were positively correlated to their knowledge and experience of caring for organ donors and recipients and there was knowledge deficit among the nurses concerning cadaveric organ donation.

CONCLUSION: While nurses with knowledge and previous experience in caring for cadaveric organ donors and recipients had a more positive attitude toward cadaveric organ donation, there is a knowledge deficit among the nurses. An educational program about organ donation is suggested to change their attitudes and hence increase organ procurement.

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