Knowledge, attitudes and practice toward epilepsy among staff and nurses in schools: A preliminary study

Jui Shao Lin, Mei Chih Huang, Ying Chieh Liu, Jing Jane Tsai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objectives: The purposes of this study were: to understand school staff and nurses' knowledge, attitudes and practice (KAP) toward epilepsy, and to compare the KAP between the staff members and nurses of schools in Tainan area. Materials and Methods: A questionnaire on KAP toward epilepsy was developed. All participants attending the "Epilepsy workshop for school staff and nurses" in June, 2000 were invited to complete this questionnaire before the workshop. Results: Between nurses and school staff members, resources for epilepsy, such as mass media (23% vs 54%, p<0.05), friends (5% vs 29%, p<0.05), medical professionals and medical documents from hospitals (68% vs 29%, p<0.01) and books (43% vs 8%, p<0.01) were significantly different. In the knowledge of epilepsy as a disorder in the brain, there were no significant differences between nurses (92%) and school staff members (71%). There were differences in attitudes toward epilepsy. Staff members were more afraid of having students with epilepsy than nurses (61% vs 16%, p<0.01). In the first-aid management of seizures, staff members without experience in the first-aid management of seizures showed significantly more inappropriate responses than nurses without experience to items of "call an ambulance immediately" (50% vs 12%, p<0.05), "turn the child's head to one side to keep the airway open" (67% vs 100%, p<0.05), "insert objects into the mouth" (58% vs 6%, p<0.01), and "send the convulsing child to the hospital" (58% vs 18%, p<0.05). However, there was no significant difference between nurses and staff members who had previous experience with epilepsy. Conclusions: School nurses received information on epilepsy through more professional channels, and their KAP of epilepsy were more appropriate than school staff members. However, the nurses' responses were still inadequate. Hence, both school staff and nurses need to improve their KAP toward epilepsy. An advanced epilepsy education program is essential to improve the competence of staff and nurses as educators and consultants on epilepsy in schools. Providing continuing education and developing epilepsy guidebooks for school nurses and staff are crucial strategies to improve the quality of care of school children with epilepsy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)409-416
Number of pages8
JournalTzu Chi Medical Journal
Volume16
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2004 Dec 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine(all)

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