Grafham E, Matheson C & Bond CM (2004) Specialist drug misuse nurse's motivation, clinical decision-making and professional communication: An exploratory study. Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing, 11 (6), pp. 690-697. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2850.2004.00787.x
UK guidelines advocate a multidisciplinary shared care approach to manage drug-related problems. While general practitioners (GPs), consultants and pharmacists have been researched, there has been little research into the role of nurses in this field. This study examined nurses specialized in the field of substance misuse. It specifically explored their motivation for entering this area, interaction with other health professionals and their role in clinical decision-making. Seventeen face-to-face interviews were undertaken with nurses from the study population of the 21 nursing staff currently employed in one service. Responses were tape-recorded, transcribed and analysed using qualitative methods. The majority of nurses entered this field because of a specific interest in its patients and their problems. Various professionals interacted with nurses: specialist medical staff, who served as an expert resource and pharmacists through the dispensing of substitute drugs. GP participation in services was inconsistent forcing some nurses to take undue responsibility for clinical decision-making. It is essential that nurses entering this field have an interest in this field and positive attitudes towards drug users, and greater emphasis should be placed on this attribute when selecting new employees. If a shared care model is to be successful, it is important that all GPs accept their responsibilities and relieve pressure currently placed on specialist services. Alternatively, it may be necessary to adopt a new model of care.
attitudes; drug problem services; motivation; nurses; shared care schemes; substance misuse
Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing: Volume 11, Issue 6
|Date accepted by journal