Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)

Date Information

May 2016

Department

School of Nursing

First Advisor

Hannah Fraley

Abstract

Dementia is a serious disease that affects 46.8 million elders globally with 9.9 million new cases each year. It is not often understood that dementia is considered a terminal illness, and it is thought that misconceptions about dementia may be a factor of poor quality of care for this vulnerable population at the end of their lives. Nurses are on the front lines of caring for dementia patients, however nurses may lack knowledge of how to best care for dementia patients and their families.

A qualitative survey study will be conducted using a convenience sample of Salem State nursing students (N= 100). Specific study aims include: do nursing students know about dementia, advanced directives, and end of life care and treatment options specifically related to the dementia patient? Thematic coding methods will be used to analyze the data.

Results from this study will help identify knowledge needs of nursing students related to end-of-life treatment for dementia patients. Understanding knowledge needs of nurses can further inform future educational programs for nursing students in order to increase the quality of care for this population.

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