Purpose: This study was conducted to determine the difficulties experienced by nursing students who gave care for individuals with neurological system disorders.
Method: Data were collected through focus group interviews which is a qualitative study method. The sample of the study consisted of 24 nursing students who agreed to participate in the research from second year students of the nursing faculty of a university in Ankara (due to their clinical practice experience in the neurology clinic), and a total of 4 focus group interviews were conducted with 6 students in each group. The questionnaire including the demographic characteristics of the students, and the semi-structured questionnaire were used in the collection of data.
Results: The average age of the students was 20.4 and 75% of them were female. It was found that all of the students gained knowledge from lectures about neurological diseases, and 75% of them had no relatives with neurological diseases. Majority of students expressed their feelings such as pity, sadness, fear, and anxiety towards patients. All of them stated that they experienced difficulties while working with individuals with neurological system disease. They specified these difficulties such as communication difficulties, complex situations in the care of the individual with neurological system disease, and working with patients and relatives who fear death and uncertainty. They remarked they received support from educators, clinical nurses and physicians to cope with these difficulties.
Conclusion: As a result of the research, it was found that all 2nd grade nursing students had difficulties while working with individuals having neurological system disease. It was determined that the students experienced negative feelings such as pity, sadness, and anxiety towards the patients, and had difficulty in communicating with and giving care to these patients .