Patricia A. Martin (Thesis Director/Committee Member), Jane C. Swart (Dean), Mary Jane Reinhart (Committee Member), Robert Scherer (Committee Member), Joseph F. Thomas (Committee Member)
Master of Science (MS)
Computer technology continues to expand and grow in health care today. Computers have become an every day part of health care throughout the hospital environment. Computer technology has been a part of the monitoring system in the operating room; now computer technology is on the verge of entering the operating room for patient charting, impacting the perioperative nurses' daily routine. Determining perioperative nurses' attitudes toward computerization is important in minimizing stress and difficulty of implementing intraoperative computerization. Through understanding demographics associated with these attitudes, a smooth transition can be accomplished to perioperative computerization. Identification of demographics that increase perioperative nurse satisfaction when using computers is paramount to the successful implementation of a computerized system in the operating room. The importance of this study was to determine what perioperative nurses' attitudes were toward computers. The research questions for this study were: what are perioperative nurses' attitudes toward computerization; and what is the relationship between age, education level, experience with computers, length of employment, and position with perioperative nurses' attitudes. The study was a partial replication, and extension of a similar study done by Brodt and Stronge (1986), which investigated nurses' attitudes toward computerization in a Midwestern community hospital. A descriptive correlational design was used in this study. The setting was a 600bed acute care medical center located in southwest Ohio. The population included 63 perioperative RNs employed at the medical center. Participants were the perioperative nurses who volunteered to complete the 30-item survey (n=5 l ). The attitudes of the nurses were determined from the scores of the Nurses' Attitudes Toward Computerization Questionnaire (NATC) (Stronge & Brodt, 1985). Findings of this study were that perioperative nurses attitudes were neutral to positive toward computers (interquartile range 80-70, median 75.5). Years of computer experience at home had a strong positive association with attitudes toward computers (rho=0.528, p=0.000 l ). Study recommendations begin with increasing basic computer education of perioperative nurses. Increased daily use of computers by perioperative nurses will help enhance efficiency and effectiveness of the operating room into the 21st century. Nurses with home computers can be expected to have a more positive attitude and may be more interested in participating in the planning for computer expansion in the operating room. Research recommendations were replication by other perioperative departments to validate this studies findings, and determination of the content of orientation programs and teaching strategies best suited to introduce perioperative staff to computers.
Department or Program
College of Nursing and Health
Year Degree Awarded