Surveying the hidden attitudes of hospital nurses' towards poverty.


Surveying the hidden attitudes of hospital nurses' towards poverty.


Wittenauer James; Ludwick Ruth; Baughman Kristin; Fishbein Rebecca


Journal of clinical nursing




AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: To explore the attitudes held by registered nurses about persons living in poverty. BACKGROUND: As a profession, nursing has strong commitment to advocating for the socioeconomically disadvantaged. The links among poverty and health disparities are well established and research demonstrates that attitudes of providers can influence how those in poverty use health services. Although nurses are the largest sector of healthcare providers globally, little research has been published on their attitudes towards patients they care for who live in poverty. DESIGN: Cross-sectional survey. METHODS: Used a convenience sample of 117 registered nurses who completed the Attitudes Towards Poverty Short Form that contained three subscales. Regression analysis was used to examine the associations between the nurses' age, education, and years of experience, political views and financial security with their total score and subscale scores. RESULTS: Nurses were more likely to agree with stigmatising statements than statements that attributed poverty to personal deficiency or structural factors. In the multivariate analysis, years of experience were associated with more positive attitudes towards those living in poverty. Nurses with the most experience had less stigmatising beliefs about poverty and were more likely to endorse structural explanations. Those with a baccalaureate education were also more likely to endorse structural explanations for poverty. CONCLUSIONS: Gaining knowledge about attitudes towards and the factors influencing those attitudes, for example, education, are important in helping combat the disparities associated with poverty. RELEVANCE TO CLINICAL PRACTICE: Nurses have a duty to evaluate their individual attitudes and biases towards those living in poverty and how those attitudes and biases may influence daily practice. Assessing nurses' attitudes towards poverty may aid in better means of empowering nurses to seek solutions that will improve health conditions for those living in poverty.


*Attitude of Health Personnel; *Healthcare Disparities; *Poverty; Adult; Age Factors; Attitude Measures; attitudes; Coefficient Alpha; Convenience Sample; Cross Sectional Studies; Cross-Sectional Studies; Descriptive Research; Descriptive Statistics; Educational Status; Female; health disparities; health inequities; Health Status Disparities; Hospital; Hospital/*psychology; Human; Humans; Income; Job Experience; Male; Middle Age; Middle Aged; Multivariate Analysis; Nurse Attitudes – Evaluation; nurses; Nursing Staff; Ohio; Politics; poverty; Poverty; Registered Nurses; Regression; Regression Analysis; Summated Rating Scaling; Surveys and Questionnaires; Young Adult



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Wittenauer James; Ludwick Ruth; Baughman Kristin; Fishbein Rebecca, “Surveying the hidden attitudes of hospital nurses' towards poverty.,” NEOMED Bibliography Database, accessed December 7, 2023,