Medication administration and anxiety: an observational study with nursing students

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Giuseppe Marletta
Iole Sorvillo
Georgiana Paduret
Rita Romano
Martina Nitro
Genny Muscella
Maria Carmela Di Monte
Rachele La Sala
Leopoldo Sarli
Giovanna Artioli
Flavia Primosa


Nursing studen*, state anxiety, medication administ* errors, near mis*, medication knowledge, nursing studen* skills


Background and aim. Medication administration errors represent a topic of great scientific interest. Medication administration is considered by nursing students a complex process during which it is easy to make mistakes; therefore, institutional measures have been adopted in order to reduce medication errors. However, it remains a critical issue in nursing practice for which several causes have been identified, including environmental factors and individual knowledge. Mistakes can be made by nurses and especially by students who must cope with additional causal factors including anxiety management. The aim was to investigate state anxiety levels among nursing students when it comes to medication administration.

Research design and methods. An observational study involving a convenience sample of 150 nursing students from a Northern Italy University has been conducted; they were asked to complete a questionnaire to measure the levels of state anxiety in relation to medication administration.


Results. There were no particularly high levels of state anxiety among students associated with medication administration; however, state anxiety levels were slightly higher in third-year students than in second-year students, and this is most likely due to the growing complexity of the medication administration process compared to the lack of experience.


Conclusions. Although the results don’t show statistically significant data, the effectiveness of nursing education plays a crucial role in reducing medication errors, which is why it is essential to provide suitable tools for the professionals of the future and invest in clinical simulations.


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