AIMS: Cardiovascular disease burden is increasing globally, pressuring nursing staff to deliver high-quality care across a diverse range of treatment areas. As such, an evaluation of the educational preparation of nurses is needed. To determine the current role, scope of practice, education level, and needs of cardiovascular nurses working across the European Society of Cardiology (ESC)-affiliated countries.
METHODS AND RESULTS: A short survey was distributed in paper (EuroHeartCare 2018) or electronic format to nurses delivering cardiovascular care. A total of 876 cardiovascular nurses from 26 ESC-affiliated countries completed the survey. Most respondents (79%), were educated to at least bachelor level, with 46% having a masters or doctorate, and were highly motivated to continue their educational development. Despite this, a large number (44.3%) of respondents believed they were not fully prepared for their job. The main areas where further education was requested included acute care in cardiovascular disease (CVD) and CVD risk factor management. Face-to-face courses/training were the most requested delivery mode, followed by E-learning-which appears to be underutilized in this population. Awareness of the existing curricula for cardiovascular nurse education was minimal, and therefore these resources require further promotion and implementation.
CONCLUSIONS: This international sample of cardiovascular nurses was generally educated to degree level and motivated to improve their cardiovascular knowledge. Many believed they were underprepared for their role, highlighting the need for increased investment in education. This should be focused on specific needs and delivered using a face-to-face, E-learning, or blended-learning format. Furthermore, increased signposting of existing resources is required.