BACKGROUND: Existing gerontological nursing competencies include the requisite knowledge and skills required for aged care nursing. What were not previously considered were legal and ethical aspects and access to technology, e-health and social media.
OBJECTIVES: This study aimed to validate an Australian gerontological nursing competencies scale and assess the factors associated with for aged care nurses in Taiwan.
METHODS: A methodological study design was used to validate the scale with a sample of 369 aged care nurses from aged care settings including nursing homes, long-term care facilities and aged care wards in Taiwan. The cultural adaptation and psychometric validation were evaluated. The content validity, construct validity through exploratory factor analysis and the internal consistency of the scale were assessed.
RESULTS: The exploratory factor analysis extracted two levels of gerontological nursing practice, 'essential' and 'enhanced', which accounted for 80.8% of the total variance. The internal consistency, split-half reliability and test-retest reliability were excellent. Aged care nurses with higher levels of education, aged care education as their highest degree and continued education within 6 months, and certified long-term care education had higher gerontological nursing competencies scores than those who did not.
CONCLUSIONS: This validated gerontological nursing competencies scale is a reliable and valid tool that can be implemented in future workforce planning, research and postgraduate and undergraduate curriculum and education in Taiwan and other Mandarin-speaking locales.
IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE: Using validated gerontological nursing competencies scales to explain different levels of specialist practice is crucial for addressing negative views about aged nursing and explicitly demonstrate the possibilities for career pathways in gerontological nursing.