A study on the knowledge, attitudes and perceptions of primary health care nurses in the eThekwini Municipality District with regards to the inclusion of homoeopathy in primary health care
MetadataShow full item record
The aim of this study was to determine the knowledge, attitudes and perceptions of Primary Health Care nurses in the Ethekwini Municipality District regarding the inclusion of homoeopathy in Primary Health Care. Nurses working in Primary Health Care facilities were approached to conduct this study. The objectives of this study was to make nurses and their patients alike aware of an alternative to conventional medicine, and to the fact that homoeopaths are medically trained practitioners. The survey method used was a self-administered questionnaire to investigate the knowledge, attitudes and perceptions of Primary Health Care nurses towards homoeopathy. The study population was nurses with a minimum of 3 years of general nursing experience, working in Primary Health Care in the Ethekwini Municipality District. The data was collected and analysed statistically using SPSS version 19. A total of 205 questionnaires were distributed and a total of 108 (52.68%) questionnaires were returned with 100 correctly completed and then analysed. The results reflected that 74% of participants felt that homoeopathy should be made available at hospitals and clinics. 69% of participants agreed (strongly agreed or agreed) that homoeopathy should play an active role in the Primary Health Care system in South Africa. The target group’s attitudes were positive as 58% of participants said they would personally use homoeopathy as a source of Primary Health Care. The majority of the participants (71%) felt that homoeopathy should be available as a treatment for most conditions. The study demonstrated an otherwise positive trend of support of those Primary Health Care nurses surveyed toward the possible inclusion of homoeopathy in Primary Health Care. Further research into the nature of such integration and the potential contribution of homoeopathy and homoeopathic practitioners is warranted. This study has established a perceived requirement for Primary Health Care nurses to be exposed to education programs which may introduce the concepts of CAM, homoeopathy and its regulations in South Africa. These nurses may then reliably guide their patients that have a historical use or future need of such services. Generalisation of results and conclusions regarding the perceptions of Primary Health Care nurses regarding homoeopathy can be tentative.