178 - Australian Perioperative Nurses’ Use Of Evidence-Based Practice Standards
The Australian College of Perioperative Nurses (ACORN) publishes professional standards to guide perioperative nursing practice in Australia. Although recent editions are increasingly updated to reflect the latest research evidence, there has been little published evidence on the uptake and compliance with the Standards since their initial introduction in 1980. While there is an imperative to disseminate evidence for best practice through evidence based guidelines or standards, these tools alone do not guarantee knowledge translation into practice. This project aimed to investigate and evaluate Australian perioperative nurses’ awareness of, compliance with, and adherence to the ACORN Standards, and more broadly, with knowledge translation and uptake of evidence based practices. The study investigated compliance from the perspectives of both clinicians and managers – as it has been widely recognised in the literature that organisational support and infrastructure is a significant factor in influencing the uptake of evidence-based practices. A descriptive correlational design using survey methodology and underpinned by the Theoretical Domains Framework (TDF) was used to explore relationship between variables. The TDF is an integrative framework of behaviour change theories designed to assist in the identification and understanding of the barriers and enablers of behaviour change and inform the design of behaviour change interventions to improve the adherence to evidence-based practice standards, where needed. Quantitative data was analysed using descriptive statistics for demographic data. Means and standard deviations were calculated for normally distributed data, with medians and ranges for non-normally distributed data, as appropriate. Relationships between demographic and other variables such as awareness, knowledge, use of evidence based practices and standards, as well as determinants of behaviour (barriers and facilitators) as indicated by the TDF-derived questions, were analysed using contingency tables and chi square analysis and multivariate analysis where indicated. Qualitative data derived from the free text comments were examined using thematic analysis, mapped onto the TDF Framework. RESULTS. We surveyed 730 Australian perioperative nurses, including instrument and circulating nurses (74%) and anesthetic and post anesthetic care nurses (26%) to identify determinants of compliance with practice standards. The findings highlight Standards where compliance is low, and possible reasons for this, and has implications for future targeted behaviour change interventions designed to increase compliance and engagement with the Standards in these areas.