Critical Care and Shock

Multicentre Study about Nurses’ Attitude to Delirium Patients

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Objective: The main goal of this research is to know a nurse’s attitude to patients that may suffer delirium during the hospitalization time. A second goal is to analyze whether relative’s visit time is a factor to be considered.

Design: Multicentre prospective and observational study.

Methodology: This study was performed in several hospitals that belong to the public sanitary health system of the Principado de Asturias (SESPA) and one hospital that belongs to Servicio Andaluz de Salud (SAS). The target populations are general hospitalization nurses, nurses specialized in intensive care, and relatives of patients admitted in intensive care units (ICU). As a tool we used a Likert questionnaire for validation of attitudes. This questionnaire included 20 questions about different situations that the nurses and relatives maintain in patients with delirium.

Results: 215 questionnaires were sent to the target population including 87.91% nurses and 12.09% patient’s relatives. Cabueñes Hospital (SESPA) returned the highest number of questionnaires (46.51%). Intensive care nurses returned the highest number of questionnaires (73.02%). We considered different assistant levels for ICU, that in mostly corresponded to levels III and IV. The analysis of the variables studied using a multiple regression linear model revealed that the answers to 9 out of 20 possible items were significantly different. Finally, the differences were highest in 3 of those 9 items.

Conclusions: Nurses don’t find to the patients with delirium, of more interest than other types of patients, although they are highly concerned by their health before and after the delirium. Nurses are partially but not completely aware that delirium is a very serious illness. Nurses are not confident regarding whether the patient’s relatives could calm down the patient and help him to overcome the disease. Given the heterogeneity of the answers there are no definitive conclusions regarding whether a change of the visit hours might be important in the recovery of patients with delirium.

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