Knowledge and attitudes of primary care nurses towards geriatric depression in Jazan Region, Saudi Arabia

Eman M. Abdelrazek, Wafa A. Bashir, Darin M. Mathkor, Abdulrahman Khamaj, Salwa A.M. Mohmed, Maria R.E. Crisostomo, Ghada A.A. Eldeeb, Warda E. Hamed, Elwaleed I. Sagiron, Suhair S. Mohmmed, Mohammed A.A. Ahmed

Abstract

Depression is a global health concern, particularly in the geriatric population. The increasing number of hospital admissions among older individuals highlights the need for healthcare professionals, particularly nurses, to understand and treat geriatric depression. Nurses play a crucial role in caring for older adults with depressive symptoms or depression. This study aimed to assess knowledge and attitudes regarding geriatric depression among primary care nurses in Jazan Region, Saudi Arabia. A cross-sectional study was conducted among 210 primary healthcare nurses in Jazan City using a validated self-administered questionnaire. Knowledge scores were measured and compared among selected demographic variables as well as attitudes toward geriatric depression. Data obtained were analyzed using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences, version. 20.0. Chi-square test, fisher’s exact test were used for comparison of variables with categorical data. Most primary care nurses were interested in caring for older patients with depression; however, they never attended training courses focused on geriatric depression. Where the study indicated that 38.1% of participants have poor knowledge about geriatric depression while 25.2% have good knowledge. Where the majority had a high understanding of the potential side effects of antidepressant medications, while they had limited knowledge about symptoms, diagnosis, and medications, the majority of participants demonstrated a positive attitude regarding feeling comfortable dealing with depressed patients' needs (56.7%) and considered their profession as a well-placed to assist patients (83.3%) However, 15.2% had a negative attitude citing a lack of self-discipline and willpower. (Afr J Reprod Health 2024; 28 [4]: 78-89).

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