Factors affecting provision of oral care by nurses in the intensive care unit at the Kenyatta national hospital
Background: Intensive care unit (leU) patients have complex oral care needs. Inadequate oral care may predispose ICU patients to nosocomial infections. Recentinitiatives have sought to improve the qua1ityand evidence base of ICU oralcare provision. Objectives: To identify factors that affect the quality of oral care in the leu at KNH. Methods: This was a descriptive cross-sectional survey. A total of 100 nurses working in the leu were asked to participate in the study. 80 agreed to participatewith 75 returning properly filled questionnaires giving a response rate of 94%. The study took 6 months from the development of the proposal to final presentation. Results: The Bivariate correlation shows that nurses' oral care education, having sufficient time to provide care and not viewing oral care as an unpleasant task haddirect effects on the quality of care provided. Conclusion: Improving the quality of oral care in intensive care unit is a multilayered task. Reinforcing proper oral care in education programmes, desensitizing nurses to the often perceived unpleasantness of cleaning oral cavity, and working with hospital managers to allow sufficient time to attend to oral care are recommended.