Evaluation of nurses' knowledge and understanding of obstacles encountered when administering resuscitation medications

Mei Jung Chen, Shu Yu, I. Ju Chen, Kai Wei K. Wang, Ya Hui Lan, Fu In Tang*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Aim: The aim of the study was to develop and validate an instrument to evaluate nurses' knowledge and to understand the obstacles that they encounter when administering resuscitation medications. Background: Insufficient knowledge is a major factor in nurses' drug administration errors. Resuscitation involves situations in which doctors issue oral orders, and is inherently highly stressful. Sufficient knowledge is vital for nurses if they are to respond quickly and accurately when administering resuscitation medications. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted. A questionnaire (20 true-false questions) developed from literature and expert input, and validated by subject experts and one pilot study, was used to evaluate nurses' knowledge of resuscitation medications. Stratified sampling and descriptive statistics were applied. Results: A total of 188 nurses participated. The overall correct answer rate was 70.5% and the greater the nurse's work experience the higher the score. Only 8% of nurses considered themselves to have sufficient knowledge and 73.9% hoped to gain more training about resuscitation medications. The leading obstacle reported was "interruption of the drug administration procedure on resuscitation" (62.8%). Seventeen out of 20 questions achieved a discriminatory power of over 0.36, indicating good to excellent questions. In the study, a total of 16 resuscitation medication errors were reported by the participants, in which the errors involved atropine (five cases), epinephrine (three cases) and others (eight cases). The errors mainly involved misinterpretation of orders, insufficient knowledge and confusing certain drugs for other look-alike drugs. Conclusion: Evidence-based results strongly suggest that nurses have insufficient knowledge and could benefit from longer working experience and additional training about resuscitation medications. Further research to validate the instrument is needed and the education of nurses regarding resuscitation medications is recommended.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)177-184
Number of pages8
JournalNurse Education Today
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2014


  • Knowledge
  • Medication errors
  • Nurses
  • Resuscitation medications


Dive into the research topics of 'Evaluation of nurses' knowledge and understanding of obstacles encountered when administering resuscitation medications'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this