Nurse Educators’ Perceptions about Introduction of Genetics and Genomics in the Curricula of Nursing Programmes in Ibadan, South West, Nigeria - Abstract
Purpose: Nurses constitute an important cadre of health workers especially involved in counseling of individuals with genetic diseases and their families. Additionally, with the advances in genomics where genetic variants have been identified and genetic testing is now available for many diseases, genetics services will become more relevant for many other diseases in the future. The recent advances in genomics suggest an urgent need to improve on the existing genetics content of the nursing curriculum particularly in developing countries. The objective of this study is to determine the genetic and genomic content of the courses taught by nurse educators to provide a theoretical basis for students in six Schools of Nursing in Ibadan, Nigeria. This is with the view of a proposed intervention study for Nurse Educators in selected nursing programmes. Methods: This qualitative study was conducted using Focus group discussions and In-depth interviews were conducted among nurse educators in Schools of Nursing in Ibadan, southwest Nigeria. Data were collected on knowledge about genetics and genomics, genetics content of existing curriculum, and perceptions about modes of integration of genetics and genomics in existing nursing curriculum. Data were analysed using thematic analysis. Results: The overall impression among study participants is paucity of genetics content in the current nursing progamme curricula. Nurse educators expressed a high level of enthusiasm about training in genetics and genomics. However, there were contrasting opinions about the changes to be made to the current nursing curriculum, with educators favouring embedding genetics content into the already existing courses while others preferred a separate genetics course, because they felt the existing curriculum is overloaded. However, respondents expressed a high level of enthusiasm about a training in genetics and genomic. Conclusion: Nurse educators were enthusiastic about inclusion of genetics in the curricula. There is need for active engagement of the Nursing and Midwifery Council to facilitate the prompt revision of the current nursing curriculum and its adoption by nursing schools in Nigeria.