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Journal of Nursing Research and Practice

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Learning opportunities and challenges of nursing students during night duty at an Intermediate Hospital in Windhoek, Namibia

Author(s): Hans Justus Amukugo*, Gideon Kelimwe Kapofi and Vistolina Nuuyoma

Background: The night duty is identified as an opportunity for extending students’ experiences that would not normally exist during the day. Third and fourth year nursing students in the Bachelor of Nursing (clinical) honors programmed are allowed to do night duty. Despite that, the learning opportunities available and challenges experienced during night duty are not known.

Objective: The objectives of the study were to: determine nursing students’ learning opportunities on night duty at Katutura Intermediate Hospital. And to determine factors that hindered teaching during night duty at Katutura Intermediate Hospital.

Methods: Quantitative descriptive was used as research design. The study population comprised of 104 (N=104) fourth year nursing students and the sample was 52 (n=52) students who have been placed on night duty. Sample calculation was done in line with Epi–info version7.2.1. The expected frequency was 50%, margin error at 5% and confidence level were calculated at 80% fourth year nursing students who worked on night duty. Self-administered questionnaires with closed-ended questions were used to gather data. Data were analyzed using the statistical package for social science. The ethical clearance and permission to conduct a study was granted from two institutions.

Results: Majority of respondents (73%) indicated that learning is taking place during night duty. Furthermore, 50% of respondents indicated they were taught as learning opportunities are available and identified by the registered nurses. The most skill learned is administrating medications (52%). Students mostly learnt by attending procedure demonstrations by registered nurses (50%). Factors that hinder learning are staff shortage (54%), negative teaching attitudes by registered nurses (19%) and inadequate preparation for teaching students (19%).

Conclusions: The study has concluded that learning is took place during night duty. Although the results revealed that registered nurses put more effort on teaching the students, there are some factors related to registered nurses that were identified as hindrances to learning.

Recommendation: More nursing staff should be placed in units where students do night duty in order to facilitate learning. In addition, there is a need to conduct an in-service training on teaching in clinical settings for nursing staff to change their attitudes towards teaching. Sex-life, social isolation and economic distress. Coping theme consists of five subthemes; accepting to live with stoma, failing to accept the life with stoma, looking positively, fatalism and support systems.


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