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Human Anatomy As Part Of Nursing Curriculum

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Human Anatomy As Part Of Nursing Curriculum

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Human Anatomy As Part Of Nursing Curriculum

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Question:
Discuss about the Human Anatomy as Part of Nursing Curriculum.
 
Answer: 

Introduction

Effective nursing involves an all-embracing understanding of the various fields of bioscience. The various fields of bioscience include microbiology, pathology, pharmacology, human anatomy, physiology and basic concepts of physics and chemistry. However, lack of discernment of these fields that leads to a dearth in nursing care imparted to the patients. These fields are all interrelated and a prior knowledge aids in efficacious assessment of the condition of the patient. The chosen research article appertains to the idea that human anatomical study is necessary for every person pertaining to the healthcare industry (Johston, 2010). It concentrates on the necessity of teaching human anatomy with the help of a practical approach. The article discusses about a feedback carried out involving the nursing students and their opinion post a single incidence of exposing the students to a cadaver and understanding their approach of assessment of the cadaver. The author to consider the situation conducted a qualitative study.
 
Literature Review
To begin with, the author’s reviews on literature states how nursing students in Australia rarely have a hands-on experience with the human cadavers. Their curriculum only includes attending lectures and that hardly includes exploration of the subjects of bioscience. Nursing students are not very keen in learning bioscience as part of their nursing curriculum as the failure rates are very high for these subjects (Mitchell, McCrorie & Sedgwick, 2004). The author discusses how the complexity of the subjects makes the students lose their interest in this subject. This lack of knowledge prevents the nurse from critically analyzing the condition of a person because most of the times they are not aware how far the diseased condition deviates from the optimal condition of the human body (Pandey & Zimitat, 2007). The nurses can only get equipped to treat a patient and provide with swift prognosis of the condition, if they decide to be through with the human anatomy.
The author has also stressed in the article how the implementation of the anatomical study can be carried out.  The interest of the student fizzes out mostly because the anatomical study and several other fields of bioscience are considered chaotic and unformed (Shors, 2006). The careful selection of author based on his knowledge, depth the student is going to build and time to be imparted to teach the subject, is also an important facet, which needs to be considered according to the author (Johnston & McAllister, 2008). A measure to make the lectures interesting by incorporation of visual channels such as the video clips and multimedia presentations has also been discussed by the author (Weatherall, 2006). The author has especially stressed on the part where the introduction of human cadaver in anatomical study is involved. Although she agrees that the access to cadavers is limited, therefore she goes onto suggesting of the usage of the same specimens for several lecture sessions.
Lack of experience on a clinical scale renders the nurses unprepared in carrying out their job conclusively (Kim, 2005). The author also suggests that the dearth of a study, which does not involve dissection, cannot help the students to further their nursing skills which is no longer limited to providing care by following the orders of a prescribing doctor (Winkelmann, 2007). The nurses will have to face situations where self-judgment of the condition of the patient will be an absolute necessity and a prompt action to relive the patient of the sufferance will be equally crucial. For such an unavoidable circumstance, prior knowledge is of utmost importance. Therefore, it has been justifiably suggested by the author that to meet the technologically advanced and intellectually taxing times of the 21st century, nurses have to be equipped with substantial knowledge of human anatomy and if possible, several other subjects related to bioscience.
 
Methodology
The author chose the first year nursing students at the Griffith University as the subject for the study (Johston, 2010). The anatomy lab at the School of Nursing and Midwifery was selected as the location of the study. The duration of the study was two hrs and the subjects (75) were exposed to six carefully dissected parts of the human cadaver. The specimens included parts of the limbs (both, lower and upper limb), quadrants (both, lower and upper quadrant), torso and full body. A senior nurse conducted the orientation. The students were then briefed in details regarding the way the specimens were prepared. The safety, behavior and conduct concerns were also discussed in details with the students. The students were also instructed about the vis-à-vis of the donation of the body. The nursing students belong to different cultural backgrounds and it become necessary for them to understand the way the anatomical study is conducted. Therefore, they are further instructed about these areas. Students are also provided with the minutiae of the specimen on display as well as features related to its pathophysiology.
The discussion dealt with the planes and sections of the body parts such as the urethra, oesophagus, trachea, nasal cavity, the location and the profile of the different organs, the volume and location of the nerve tracts, the location and the width of the skeletal muscles. Post the orientation module, the students were asked to explore the specimens in order to put the discussion session into practical use. This part was then followed by the filling of the feedback form by the students, which consisted of a questionnaire, which had a Likert-scale of assessment. Simple concepts of percentage calculation were applied to study the feedback from the reports.
Ethics Consideration
For the study carried out by the author, no sort of clearance on a formal note was necessary from the National and University Ethics Committee (Johnston, 2010). The data collected with the help of the feedback forms was part of the customary appraisal of the course, which is recognizable as part of the semester. The students were given explanation regarding the requirement of the feedback form. Students who chose to remain anonymous in their participation or refrained from answering few of the questions exempted.
 
Significant Results
The author has employed a qualitative approach towards the study where she has introduced a feedback questionnaire to the nursing students where they had to write about the hands-on experience and use the Likert-scale to assess the questions in the form (Johnston, 2010). It was seen that 96% of the students gave a positive feedback, which means that they would appreciate such modulation in their curriculum.
A rate as high as 85% of the students found it relevant to their study. This figure has been an average estimation based on the two figures which was derived based on the points where the students believed that the hands-on study would help them in future from the aspect of nursing and the other half of the students who considered it relevant to their theoretical study of human anatomy and physiology. An upsetting figure was observed where 40% of the students were glad that there would not be a repetition of the laboratory visit. However, it was later observed that the failure rate had an impressive lowering of percentage. Hence, it can be reasonably concluded that the visit was helpful for the students to perform better as it imparted sound understanding of the concepts of human anatomy.
Reflective Critique
The research illustrates the idea that the clearly that the incorporation of the subject of human anatomy helps the nursing students to develop a critical bent of mind which will in future help them in evaluating the condition of the patient better. A holistic approach towards the treatment of the patient receives top priority and the promised can only be delivered if the implementation of medical knowledge is carried out (El-Sayed & El-Raouf, 2013). The quality of learning of these subjects can only improve and prove to be easier if the students can be taught to visualize. For example, the plane based and sectional studies of the various parts of the body such as the vagina, rectal passage and urethra, aided the patients in performing efficient catheterization process. It also helped them in the intubation/extubation procedure of trachea, based on their prior knowledge of the profile and placement within the body (McLachlan, 2004).
The theoretical assistance of human anatomy also allowed the students to analyze the diagnoses and the reports in a more efficient way. They were  able to explain to their respective patients even the meaning of their ECG report or their lipid-profile study. Not only in depth study of these subjects but also a practical experience by studying various case histories, will lead to better grasp of the nitty-gritty of anatomy (Crane & Cox, 2013).  The whole point of this study is to reduce considerably the gap between theory and practice (Gordon et al., 2012).
 
Recommendation
The author should consider carrying a similar study either taking into consideration the field bioscience as a whole or considering each subjects that forms bioscience, among the nursing students to assess whether it is anatomy alone or they are anxious about studying bioscience. Other than that, a study can also be carried out on whether having a prior background in bioscience would help the nursing students to deal with these subjects. 
 
References:
Crane, J., & Cox, J. (2013). More than Just a Lack of Knowledge: A Discussion of the Potential Hidden-Impact of Poor Pre-enrolment Science Background on Nursing Student Success in Bioscience Subjects. International Journal of Innovation in Science and Mathematics Education (formerly CAL-laborate International), 21(2).
El-Sayed, R. E. S. H., & El-Raouf, S. E. H. A. (2013). Video-based lectures: An emerging paradigm for teaching human anatomy and physiology to student nurses. Alexandria Journal of Medicine, 49(3), 215-222.
Gordon, C., Plenderleith, M., Hudson, P., Wirihana, L., & Craft, J. (2012). Cross-sectional analysis of undergraduate nursing students’ perceptions of bioscience. Proceedings of The Australian Conference on Science and Mathematics Education (formerly UniServe Science Conference).
Johnston, A. N. (2010). Anatomy for nurses: Providing students with the best learning experience. Nurse Education in Practice, 10(4), 222-226.
Johnston, A. N. B., & McAllister, M. (2008). Back to the future with hands-on science: Students’ perceptions of learning anatomy and physiology. Journal of Nursing Education, 47(9), 417-421.
Kim, Y. M. (2005). Effects of a Web-based teaching method on undergraduate nursing students’ learning of electrocardiography. Journal of Nursing Education, 44(1), 35.
McLachlan, J. C. (2004). New path for teaching anatomy: living anatomy and medical imaging vs. dissection. The Anatomical Record Part B: The New Anatomist, 281(1), 4-5.
Mitchell, B. S., McCrorie, P., & Sedgwick, P. (2004). Student attitudes towards anatomy teaching and learning in a multiprofessional context. Medical Education, 38(7), 737-748.
Pandey, P., & Zimitat, C. (2007). Medical students’ learning of anatomy: memorisation, understanding and visualisation. Medical education, 41(1), 7-14.
Shors, T. J. (2006). Stressful experience and learning across the lifespan. Annual review of psychology, 57, 55.
Weatherall, D. J. (2006). Science in the undergraduate curriculum during the 20th century. Medical education, 40(3), 195-201.
Winkelmann, A. (2007). Anatomical dissection as a teaching method in medical school: a review of the evidence. Medical education, 41(1), 15-22. 

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