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Abstract Details

Nurses’ Perspectives on a Novel Stroke Nurse Training Program in Lusaka, Zambia
General Neurology
P1 - Poster Session 1 (8:00 AM-9:00 AM)
15-001

Stroke units, which rely heavily on specialized nursing care, are the global standard of stroke care and are associated with improved outcomes.  However, they are largely absent in resource-limited settings.

Describe the impact of a new stroke nurse training program at the University Teaching Hospital in Lusaka, Zambia.

Prior to opening Zambia’s first-ever stroke unit in October 2023, two one-week stroke nurse training workshops were conducted in September 2023. These utilized training materials adapted from the Wessex Ghana Stroke Partnership, which were co-designed by multidisciplinary team members in Ghana and the UK. Individual semi-structured interviews were conducted with Zambian nurses who had completed training; these were analyzed thematically.

All nurses interviewed (n=18 of 30 trained) rated their training very positively, reporting feeling empowered with new knowledge and skills and developing improved communication with patients, caregivers, and stroke doctors. Specifically, nurses reported their clinical practice had changed from skill-building in the following areas: (1) turning and repositioning patients more frequently; (2) aspiration prevention through implementation of formal nurse-led swallow screenings; (3) increased mobilization of patients through implementation of nurse-led mobility assessments and nurse-/caregiver-led exercises; and (4) improved incontinence management by reducing catheter use and more frequent diaper changes. Despite increased workload, nurses felt motivated and proud to pioneer a new standard of care for stroke patients in Zambia. Nurses suggested implementing monthly continuing medical education, periodic performance evaluations, Stroke Nurse of the Month incentives, and nurse exchange visits to established stroke centers in the future.

Implementation of a stroke nurse training program previously successfully utilized in Ghana was also highly successful in Zambia, demonstrating the potential to empower nurses with new stroke care clinical competencies and skills.  Further evaluation is needed to determine if knowledge and skills are retained long-term and result in improved patient outcomes.
Authors/Disclosures
Phoebe Chen
PRESENTER
Ms. Chen has nothing to disclose.
Nagapranati Nanduri No disclosure on file
Gabriel Sneh, MD (Johns Hopkins) Dr. Sneh has nothing to disclose.
Sarah Braun (University Teaching Hospital, Lusaka, Zambia) No disclosure on file
Monica Appiah No disclosure on file
MAXWELL ASARE No disclosure on file
Melody T. Asukile, MBBS (University Teaching Hospital) Dr. Asukile has received research support from Royal Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. Dr. Asukile has received personal compensation in the range of $0-$499 for serving as a meeting speaker with American Neurological Association.
Mashina Chomba, MBChB (University of Zambia) Dr. Chomba has nothing to disclose.
Meron Gebrewold, MD (Addis Ababa University) Dr. Gebrewold has nothing to disclose.
Kasakula Kaunda (UTH Internal Medicine Department) No disclosure on file
Michael Kinkata No disclosure on file
Jessica Mwanza (Special Hope Network) No disclosure on file
Royce Mwenya No disclosure on file
Muchinka Peele (G-Speech Therapy Centre) No disclosure on file
Alexandra Peloso, MD Dr. Peloso has nothing to disclose.
JANE SINGOYI No disclosure on file
Jonathan Quarton No disclosure on file
Stefan Baral No disclosure on file
Gretchen L. Birbeck, MD, MPH, DTMH, FAAN (University of Rochester/CHET) An immediate family member of Dr. Birbeck has received personal compensation in the range of $10,000-$49,999 for serving as an Expert Witness for Various. Dr. Birbeck has a non-compensated relationship as a Ambassador for Zambia with RSTMH that is relevant to AAN interests or activities.
Rebecca F. Gottesman, MD (Johns Hopkins University) Dr. Gottesman has received personal compensation in the range of $10,000-$49,999 for serving as an Editor, Associate Editor, or Editorial Advisory Board Member for American Academy of Neurology. The institution of Dr. Gottesman has received research support from NIH.
Izukanje Sikazwe No disclosure on file
Peter Winch (Johns Hopkins University) No disclosure on file
Albert K. Akpalu, MD (School of Medicine and Dentistry) Dr. Akpalu has nothing to disclose.
Lucy Sykes No disclosure on file
Morgan Prust, MD (Yale University School of Medicine) Dr. Prust has nothing to disclose.
Deanna Saylor, MD, MHS (Johns Hopkins Hospital) The institution of Dr. Saylor has received research support from National Institutes of Health. The institution of Dr. Saylor has received research support from National Multiple Sclerosis Society. The institution of Dr. Saylor has received research support from American Academy of Neurology. The institution of Dr. Saylor has received research support from United States Department of State. Dr. Saylor has a non-compensated relationship as a Member of multiple committees and task forces focused on improving access to MS medications to people across the world with Multiple Sclerosis International Federation that is relevant to AAN interests or activities. Dr. Saylor has a non-compensated relationship as a Member of the Neurology and COVID19 committee with World Health Organization that is relevant to AAN interests or activities. Dr. Saylor has a non-compensated relationship as a Member of the International Outreach Committee, Junior and Early Career Membership Committee, and Educational Innovation Commitees with American Neurological Association that is relevant to AAN interests or activities.