Involving nursing students into clinical research projects: Reliability of data and experiences of students?
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionSortland, K., Halvorsen, K., Saltyte, J.B. & Almendingen, K. (2020). Involving nursing students into clinical research projects: Reliability of data and experiences of students?. Journal of Clinical Nursing (JCN), 29(19-20), 3860-3868. doi: https://doi.org/10.1111/jocn.15423 https://doi.org/10.1111/jocn.15423
Aims: To examine reliability of the screening data collected by nursing students. Furthermore, to examine students' evaluations of participation in nutritional screening of older hospitalised patients. Background: In cross‐sectional study on nutritional risk and care in older hospitalised patients, the prevalence for undernutrition was 45%, a finding corresponding with other international studies. In this study, nursing students (n = 173) screened older patients (n = 508) for malnutrition, while they were in hospital practice. The validity of the results thus depends on the quality of the students screening. Methods: Agreement in measurements on age, weight, height and nutritional risk scoring by students using Nutritional Risk Screening (NRS 2002) was assessed for 30 randomly selected hospitalised patients (≥70 years), with data collected by students in the study and two additional students. Bland–Altman analysis was used for continuous measurements, while kappa statistic was used to assess agreement between the NRS 2002 scores. Experiences of all included students were described. A STROBE checklist was completed. Results: No significant bias was found among the students. Questionnaire data showed that 70.5% of the students agreed that the NRS 2002 was easy to use and 59.0% found it easier to measure the patients' height than weight. It was 70.5% who found it difficult to find previously recorded information on the patients' weight in the electronic records. Only 13% found it easy to find information on patients' nutritional status. 37.0% agreed that participating in the screening was instructive, and 34.0% gained increased interest in nutritional care. Conclusion: Collaborating with students in screening older patients for nutritional risk and undernutrition gave reliable data and increased the students' interest in nutritional care among hospitalised patients. Relevance to clinical practice: Collaborating with students contributes with valuable data for practice and research. Moreover, it increases students' engagement for improved care practices for older patients. What does this paper contribute to the wider global clinical community? Older hospitalised patients are considerably at risk of malnutrition. Research collaboration with nursing students in their hospital practice on nutritional risk screening provide reliable data. Participation in research increases nursing students' engagement for improved nutritional care practices.