Roles, Skills and Required Educational Framework of Nurses in Crisis and Disaster Management

Background: During the last years, the big upsurge of naturals and manmade disasters has caused incalculable social and economic effects and global concern as to how modern societies are prepared to respond to a massive destruction event. Nurses are important members of crisis and disaster management team, however their roles, skills and training framework are still unclear. Aim: The purpose of this review was to investigate the nursing roles and skills which they contribute to effective disaster management, as well as the appropriate training framework that properly prepares nurses in a cognitive and practical level. Material and Method: An advanced literature research on disaster nursing and crisis and disaster management was carried out between June 2017 and March 2018 in Pubmed Database, Medline, Cochrane Library, Google Scholar and the National PhD Thesis Archive. Key words were disaster nursing, crisis management, competencies, skills, education, training and roles. Articles in English language were included as well as those which were published after 2000. Articles referring exclusively in vulnerable populations were excluded. Results: The roles that nurses play after a disaster, refer to injured management as well to the implementation of crisis management principles. In more details, they proceed to triage and transportation of the injured, provide life support, care and psychological support, organize disaster plans and epidemiological surveillance, participate in simulation exercises and in resources management, educate the community, resolve emerging problems and share information. The skills that have been documented refer to developing capacities in order to implement basic nursing activities, such as First Aid, life support and wound care. In addition to that, it has also been documented skills referring to communication and psychological support, as well as detection of signs and symptoms of exposure to biological agents, isolation and decontamination. Nurses’ training with intergrated curriculum in disaster nursing, including theoretical and practical components, enhances self-assessment and self-efficacy in the areas of development, policy planning, education and preparation. It also reduces incident management and handling time, improve information dissemination, increase professional satisfaction and develop organizational, professional, colleagues and friendly bonds. Conclusions: Nurses have multiple roles and abilities in disaster management, by participating in all stages of a crisis situation. With the appropriate educational background, they contribute directly and decisively to minimizing the risk of a potential catastrophic event, reducing its impacts and restoring normality within the affected community.

Category: Volume 57, N 3
Hits: 1537 Hits
Created Date: 15-09-2018
Authors: Maria Pra , Nikolaos Fotos , Athina Kalokairinou , Margarita Giannakopoulou