Background: There is little research on nursing students' application of family health assessment in clinical practice.
Objective: To examine the effect of an elective course, Family in Health and Illness (FHI), on year 4 nursing students' family health assessment and practice.
Methods: A quasi-experimental design was used. One hundred and twenty students completed pre- and post-course questionnaires, after taking FHI (n=49) or a course in Women's Health (WH; n=71) in a baccalaureate nursing program in Hong Kong. Students rated their interest in family assessment and appraised their own confidence and competence in practicing family nursing before the courses commenced, immediately after, and three months post course completion. In addition, their perceived ease of applying family assessment in practice was measured.
Results: Students who had taken FHI reported significantly higher interest than those who had not immediately after the course and three months later. The perceived ease of functional assessment immediate after the course was the only predictor of confidence and competence in practicing family nursing (B=0.76, 95% CI=1.37-8.23, p=0.011) at the 3-month follow-up after controlling for age and baseline measures. Level of interest (B=0.44, 95% CI=4.55-0.13, p=0.040) was an additional predictor of nurse-patient relationship at the 3-month follow-up.
Conclusion: Educational input to nursing students may foster their interest and confidence in working with families in clinical settings. Further studies are needed to examine the factors impeding actual application of family nursing assessment.
Scopus Subject Areas
- Family assessment skills
- Family nursing
- Hong Kong