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Implications of School Nurses' Self-Care Practices

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Self-care is essential to the well-being of nurses and the safety of their patients. Current literature is lacking research in regard to the self-care practices of school nurses. School nurses are susceptible to burnout and compassion fatigue, which is a

Self-care is essential to the well-being of nurses and the safety of their patients. Current literature is lacking research in regard to the self-care practices of school nurses. School nurses are susceptible to burnout and compassion fatigue, which is a form of burnout, from the many stressors they face. Self-care is needed to reduce the occurrence of burnout and improve the safety of those under their care. The purpose of this research is to assess the current self-care practices of school nurses so further research and interventions can take place. The theoretical framework used is Jean Watson’s Theory of Human Caring, which has a core concept of cultivating spiritual practices toward a wholeness of one’s mind, body and spirit and a core principal of changing oneself, others, and surrounding environments through care. The research questions this study investigates are, “What are the most common self-care practices of school-nurses?” and, “What are the least common self-care practices of school nurses?” The 40-item Self-Care Questionnaire, from The Institute for Functional Medicine, was used. It uses a Likert-type scale, with response options ranging from 0 (never) to 5 (always). This questionnaire includes four domains—physical, mental/emotional/spiritual, professional life/work/career, and social life/family/relationships—each containing 10 items. Survey results of 82 research participants were uploaded to SPSS 25. Results show that school nurses most frequently engage in professional self-care and least frequently engage in physical self-care. It is strongly recommended that the data from this study be made available to school nurses and that further research be conducted to deeply assess how the self-care practices of school nurses can be improved.

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2019-05