Nurses' knowledge of high-alert medications in a large-size university hospital




Objective: The objective of this study was to characterize the knowledge about high alert medications (HAMs) among nurses who work in an Intensive Care Unit (ICU). Methods: A cross-sectional study was carried out in February 2019. We included 100 ICU nurses and nursing technicians from an ICU of a large university hospital working at three works shifts through convenience sampling. The participants answered a self-reported questionnaire about self-assessment and experience with HAMs, obstacles when administering HAMs, administration knowledge, and clinical procedures involving HAMs. Knowledge was scored by correct answers (less than 70 points, from 70-89 and above 90). Descriptive analyzes were performed using relative frequency, mean and standard deviation, or median and interquartile range. Fisher’s Exact Test was used to verify the associations between the score obtained and sociodemographic and labor variables, considering a significance level of 5%. The analyzes were performed using SPSS version 18.0.0. Results: The mean knowledge score for HAMs was 73.2 (+16.4); 36% of participants had a score of less than 70, 54% from 70 to 89, and 10% above 90. The main obstacles were oral order (50%), confused prescription (39%), and insufficient knowledge (35%). Conclusion: Only one in 10 professionals scored above 90 points, suggesting a fragile ICU care practice situation involving HAMS.


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PEREIRA LN, CAON S, PINTO AN, MACIEL FH, SEMPÉ TS, PIZZOL TS. Nurses’ knowledge of high-alert medications in a large-size university hospital. Rev Bras Farm Hosp Serv Saude [Internet]. 2021Jun.15 [cited 2024May18];12(2):567. Available from: