Exploring abortion education in undergraduate nursing programs in Georgia
Hudson-Gallogly, Wanda Kim
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According to the National Right to Life (NRL), the pro-life organization, and National Abortion Federation (NAF), the pro-choice organization, there were 1.2 million abortions in the United States in 2009. Shotorbani, Zimmerman, Bell, Ward, and Assefi (2004) contend that surgical abortion remains one of the most common surgical procedure for women of reproductive age. Further, Guttmacher Institute (2011) estimated 1.21 million was performed in the United States in 2009. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) there were 28,440 residents of Georgia who obtained a legal abortion (2008). Considering the numbers of abortions performed in the United States and Georgia, nurses need to be educated about caring for women who seek abortion. Little is known about instruction related to abortion in nursing curricula. This quantitative study investigated educational practices and factors that may impact the inclusion of abortion content. A 32-item questionnaire was developed to measure three foci: Program Practices, Accommodations, and Contextual Factors related to nursing education about abortion. The survey was administered online and via telephone to the women’s health educator from each accredited pre-licensure nursing program in Georgia. Of the 34 such schools, 22 schools (64.7%) participated in the study. Data analysis showed that 77.3 % of Georgia nursing educators provide content about surgical abortion in the classroom; 61.9% % did not provide an alternate assignment (accommodation) for the content. “Time to teach” was identified by 70 % of faculty respondents as the primary factor impacting inclusion of abortion- related content in the curriculum.