Date of Graduation

Spring 2013

Degree

Master of Science in Nursing

Department

Nursing

Committee Chair

Kathryn Hope

Keywords

barriers, chemotherapy safe handling, antineoplastic agents, protective gloves, occupational exposure, antineoplastic

Subject Categories

Nursing

Abstract

Occupational exposure to chemotherapy can result in adverse health effects. Guidelines have been established to protect nurses from exposure, yet there is little evidence that documents compliance. The research questions were: What is the rate of nurses' compliance with chemotherapy safe handling guidelines? What is the rate of oncology nurse participation in occupational health surveillance? In the oncology setting, what are self-reported barriers to nurses' compliance with chemotherapy safe handling guidelines? What are the self-reported perceived risks associated with handling chemotherapy drugs and how do nurses define risk? A descriptive, cross-sectional study surveyed oncology nurses (N = 160; 18% response rate) in the United States using an e-mail questionnaire. Findings were: M = 33.5% of nurses always used double gloves, M = 11.1% always wore a mask, M = 15.9% always wore eye protection, and M = 55.7% always wore a gown when handling chemotherapy drugs. Health surveillance was low (31.4%). The most common self-reported barrier to compliance was personal protective equipment (PPE) was too hot. Skin, respiratory, and eye conditions were reported as the most common risks associated with handling chemotherapy. Identifying perceived susceptibility of adverse health effects related to chemotherapy exposure and perceived barriers to using PPE may guide future research, improve education practice, and promote health. KEYWORDS: barriers, chemotherapy safe handling, antineoplastic agents, protective gloves, occupational exposure, antineoplastic

Copyright

© Gaylene Chapman

Campus Only

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