Table of Contents
ISRN Nursing
Volume 2011, Article ID 821514, 11 pages
Research Article

Determinants of Nurses' Attitudes toward the Care of Patients with Alcohol Problems

School of Psychology, Social Work and Social Policy, University of South Australia, GPO Box 2471, Adelaide, SA 5001, Australia

Received 21 January 2011; Accepted 1 March 2011

Academic Editors: B. C. Evans and E. O. C. Hall

Copyright © 2011 Cara Elizabeth Crothers and Jillian Dorrian. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Nurses ( 𝑛 = 4 9 , age = 39 ± 11 y) from an Australian metropolitan hospital completed the Marcus Alcoholism, Seaman Mannello Nurses' Attitudes toward Alcoholism, and the shortened Alcohol and Alcohol Problems Perception Questionnaires. The majority had personal (73%) and/or professional (93%) experience with people with alcohol problems. Not one reported receiving drug and alcohol training. On average, nurses held neutral to positive attitudes toward alcohol problems; however, 14.3% completely disagreed with the statement “I want to work with drinkers,” and 12.5% completely disagreed that they were likely to find working with people with alcohol problems rewarding. Attitudes to care were significantly influenced by age, personal drinking habits, and beliefs about whether patients can be helped, whether alcoholism is a character defect, and the relationship between alcoholism and social status. Negative attitudes towards patient care persist and are influenced by age, personal drinking habits, and beliefs about alcoholism. Specific training in this area may be beneficial.