Nurses´ experiences when caring for patients infected with malaria in Tanzania : A qualitative interview study

University essay from Högskolan i Jönköping/HHJ, Avd. för omvårdnad; Högskolan i Jönköping/HHJ, Avd. för omvårdnad

Abstract: Background: Malaria is one of the mosquito-transmitted diseases that is killing millions of people every year, with the highest prevalence in Africa. In Tanzania, more than 90 percent of the inhabitants are at risk of being infected with malaria. The malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum does not obtain specific symptoms and differential diagnoses can make it difficult to diagnose malaria. If malaria gets developed into a severe stage, it can affect organs and eventually cause death. Nurses have the role to educate inhabitants on how to prevent malaria. Purpose: The aim of this study was to describe nurses ́ experiences when caring for patients infected with malaria in Tanzania. Method: Study with a qualitative approach. A content analysis with a manifest structure was carried out, based on individual semi-structured in-depth interviews with nurses. Result: Nurses found it difficult to differentiate malaria from other diseases, like typhoid or meningitis. Nurses focused mostly on patients’ physical by working with medical treatment and education about malaria prevention. Conclusion: This study highlighted the importance for nurses of being educated about malaria and knowing how to assess its condition as it can be a mortal disease.

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