2.50
Hdl Handle:
http://hdl.handle.net/10755/243333
Category:
Full-text
Type:
Presentation
Title:
Using the Glasgow Coma Scale in Non-Neurological Clinical Areas
Author(s):
Thornley, Tracey; Rullis, Lauren
Lead Author STTI Affiliation:
Sydney
Author Details:
Thornley, Tracey, RN, PhD, BN, (Hons), tracey.thornley@nd.edu.au; Rullis, Lauren, BN;
Abstract:
Purpose:

The Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) was designed for use in a wide range of clinical environments with staff that had no special training (Teasdale and Jennett 1974).  Evidence (Waterhouse 2007 and 2008) suggests however that there are ongoing problems with the use of the GCS assessment, and the impact that this might have on patient outcome is unknown.  Variations in practice have been found in all areas, including the neurological specialties wards, however the skill level of nursing staff in non neurological areas is concerning with inconsistency in practice.

The purpose of this project was to explore the use of the GCS in the non neurological clinical areas – to determine whether registered nurses felt confident in using the scale to assess patients with neurologic deterioration.  

Methods:

A mixed methods methodology was used with two phases. Registered nurses from a metropolitan Sydney Hospital were recruited to the study. The first phase asked participants to complete an existing survey (Waterhouse 2008). Following analysis of the survey data, questions were developed and used in the phase two focus group.

Results:

The results demonstrated that the participants in the non neurological clinical areas had significant gaps in their education and training. Furthermore because the participants did not routinely assess patients using the GCS in the non neurological areas, a lack of skill refinement led to a knowledge and practice deficit. Incomplete skill development meant that the participants did not feel confident in using the GCS to assess patients with neurological dysfunction. In fact, participants were confused regarding the use of the GCS, and this affected how they made clinical decisions. This was significant because timely identification of neurological deterioration was crucial to patient survival.

Conclusion:

Recommendations for practice include more attention to skill development and importantly opportunities for training, refinement and reinforcement of the GCS.

Keywords:
Glasgow Coma Scale; Skill Development; Patient Assessment
Repository Posting Date:
12-Sep-2012
Date of Publication:
12-Sep-2012 ; 12-Sep-2012
Conference Date:
2012
Conference Name:
23rd International Nursing Research Congress
Conference Host:
Sigma Theta Tau International, the Honor Society of Nursing
Conference Location:
Brisbane, Australia

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.language.isoenen
dc.type.categoryFull-texten
dc.typePresentationen
dc.titleUsing the Glasgow Coma Scale in Non-Neurological Clinical Areasen
dc.contributor.authorThornley, Traceyen
dc.contributor.authorRullis, Laurenen
dc.contributor.departmentSydneyen
dc.author.detailsThornley, Tracey, RN, PhD, BN, (Hons), tracey.thornley@nd.edu.au; Rullis, Lauren, BN;en
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10755/243333-
dc.description.abstract<b>Purpose: </b> <p>The Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) was designed for use in a wide range of clinical environments with staff that had no special training (Teasdale and Jennett 1974).&nbsp; Evidence (Waterhouse 2007 and 2008) suggests however that there are ongoing problems with the use of the GCS assessment, and the impact that this might have on patient outcome is unknown.&nbsp; Variations in practice have been found in all areas, including the neurological specialties wards, however the skill level of nursing staff in non neurological areas is concerning with inconsistency in practice. <p>The purpose of this project was to explore the use of the GCS in the non neurological clinical areas &ndash; to determine whether registered nurses felt confident in using the scale to assess patients with neurologic deterioration. &nbsp; <p><b>Methods: </b> <p>A mixed methods methodology was used with two phases. Registered nurses from a metropolitan Sydney Hospital were recruited to the study. The first phase asked participants to complete an existing survey (Waterhouse 2008). Following analysis of the survey data, questions were developed and used in the phase two focus group. <p><b>Results: </b> <p>The results demonstrated that the participants in the non neurological clinical areas had significant gaps in their education and training. Furthermore because the participants did not routinely assess patients using the GCS in the non neurological areas, a lack of skill refinement led to a knowledge and practice deficit. Incomplete skill development meant that the participants did not feel confident in using the GCS to assess patients with neurological dysfunction. In fact, participants were confused regarding the use of the GCS, and this affected how they made clinical decisions. This was significant because timely identification of neurological deterioration was crucial to patient survival. <p><b>Conclusion: </b> <p>Recommendations for practice include more attention to skill development and importantly opportunities for training, refinement and reinforcement of the GCS.en
dc.subjectGlasgow Coma Scaleen
dc.subjectSkill Developmenten
dc.subjectPatient Assessmenten
dc.date.available2012-09-12T09:20:46Z-
dc.date.issued2012-09-12-
dc.date.issued2012-09-12en
dc.date.accessioned2012-09-12T09:20:46Z-
dc.conference.date2012en
dc.conference.name23rd International Nursing Research Congressen
dc.conference.hostSigma Theta Tau International, the Honor Society of Nursingen
dc.conference.locationBrisbane, Australiaen
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