The Components of Nursing Competence in Caring for Older People in Iranian Hospitals: A Qualitative Study

Masoud Bahrami, Zahra Purfarzad, Mahrokh Keshvari, Mohammad Rafiei


Background: There is limited research on gerontological nursing competence in hospitals. However, there is no comprehensive and integrated description of the gerontological nursing competence requirements in hospitals. The purpose of this study was to explain the components of nursing competence in caring for older people in Iranian hospitals.

Materials and Methods: This is a qualitative descriptive‑exploratory study. The data were collected through a semi‑structured interview with nurses, nurse managers, and clinical educators in teaching hospitals and nursing schools affiliated to Arak, Isfahan, and Tehran Universities of Medical Sciences in Iran from September 2015 to July 2016. Participants included 25 people who were selected by purposive and snowball sampling method. Sampling continued until data saturation. Data were analyzed using conventional content analysis method.

Results: Data analysis generated three main categories including (1) Patient and family centered care; (2) Process‑oriented care; and (3) Self‑care and continuing professional development.

Conclusions: Nurses should have competencies such as participation and empowerment of the patient and family; ease of comfort in the elderly; comprehensive geriatric assessment; development, implementation and evaluation of care plan; development of knowledge and clinical proficiency; and coaching so that they can work effectively during the care of the elderly. The results of this study can be used by nursing educators, nursing students, and nurses to develop their individual and professional skills in the field of gerontological nursing.


Geriatric nursing,Iran,professional competence,qualitative research

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