Knowledge,attitudes and practices of nurses towards prevention of childhood blidness at mansa general hospital.
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The aim of this study was to determine knowledge, attitudes and practices of nurses at Mansa General Hospital towards prevention of childhood blindness. The reason to undertake this study emanated from the long working experience of the Researcher at Lubwe Mission Hospital in Sanfya District of Luapula Province in Eye Clinic. It was observed that, nurses took little on no steps in the prevention of childhood blindness. In Zambia childhood blindness is one of the major health problems. Statistics obtained from Mansa District Action Plan 2006 indicates that, the prevalence of eye infections (175.2/1000 in 2005) in Mansa is high and eye infections are one of the top ten causes of morbidity in the under five children. Most of these eye infections cause blindness. The main factors that may affect practice of nurses towards prevention of childhood blindness may be service related, disease related, socioeconomic and cultural factors. Low levels of knowledge, negative attitude, training in primary eye care, placement of nurses and institution policies among others may contribute to the poor practices of nurses in prevention of childhood blindness. A descriptive cross sectional study design with both qualitative and quantitative dimensions was used in this study with the help of a self administered questionnaire to collect data from the respondents.The study population were nurses at Mansa General Hospital. A probability sampling method called simple random sampling using the lottery technique was used to select the sample. The sample size for this study comprised of 50 nurses. Data was collected between 1st and 30th September, 2008.The study revealed that low levels of knowledge (44%) and lack of policy and guidelines on prevention of childhood blindness (56%) were some of the factors among others that contributed to poor practice of nurses on prevention of childhood blindness.