Oral Presentation Palliative Care Nurses Australia Conference 2020

A survey of knowledge, attitude and practice of nurses towards palliative care in all levels of health care, North Ethiopia. (70353)

Atsede Aregay 1 , Margaret O'Connor 2 , Jill Stow 3 , Nicola Ayers 4 , Susan Lee 5
  1. Nursing and Midwifery, MSc, Melbourne, VICTORIA, Australia
  2. Nursing and Midwifery, AM (DN), Melbourne, VICTORIA, Australia
  3. St Vincent's Private Hospital, PhD, Melbourne, VICTORIA, Australia
  4. Federal Ministry of Health, PhD, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
  5. Nursing and Midwifery, PhD, Melbourne, VICTORIA, Australia


The equitable provision of palliative care for those who need it is a major worldwide issue. Nurses play a pivotal role in providing palliative care and managing pain at all levels of health care system. However, a lack of nurses trained in palliative care, especially throughout rural and regional areas may compromise end-of-life care.


To describe the level of   knowledge, attitudes, and self-reported practice of nurses in Northern Ethiopia.


A survey component of descriptive case study was conducted, using a self-administered questionnaire. Nurses working in regional services in Northern Ethiopia were invited to participate. Data was obtained using the modified version of Frommelt’s Attitude Toward Care of the Dying (FATCOD) Scale for attitude, Palliative Care Quiz for Nursing (PCQN) for knowledge and from different literature for self-reported practice items. The Statistical Package for the Social Science (SPSS) Version 25 were used for data entrance and analysis.


A total of 220 questionnaires were distributed with 173 (79%) completed and returned. The mean age of nurses (173) was 32.63years + 7.39 SD, in the range of (22-57). Of the study participants 69 (40%) scored 75% or greater for knowledge; 173 (100%) scored 50% or greater for attitude; and only 32 (18.5%) scored 75% or greater for self-reported practice. Although there was a small negative correlation between knowledge and self-reported practice (n=171, r= -0.18, p=0.01), the correlation between attitude and self-reported practice was positive (n=173, r=0.22, p=0.003).

Implications for practice

The findings suggest that nurses in regional and rural Ethiopia lack knowledge about palliative care practice and that some knowledge does not necessarily lead to better practice.


Because of the inadequacy of palliative care knowledge and practice, priority should be given to integrate palliative care into existing curricula for the pre-service nursing students and in-service nursing programs. Specific attention should be paid to nursing roles in palliative care practice in clinical settings.


The Authors acknowledge author AA is supported by a Monash University International Postgraduate Research Award.