Assessment of knowledge, attitude and practice of nurses regarding enteral nutrition at a military hospital

  • Londolani Ramuada
  • Lizl Veldsman
  • Nedzingahe Livhuwani
  • Renée Blaauw


Background and objectives: Enteral nutrition (EN) support plays a vital role in reducing malnutrition in hospitalised patients, and its provision is primarily a nurse’s role. Therefore, nurses need to have adequate knowledge and a positive attitude regarding EN. This study aimed to determine the knowledge, attitudes and practices (KAPs) regarding enteral nutrition of nursing personnel at 1 Military Hospital and to determine the need for updated in-service training.
Method: A descriptive, cross-sectional study with an analytical component was used to collect data from military nurses through a validated self-administered questionnaire. A score of 80% and above was rated as adequate knowledge. Descriptive statistics were employed to describe the results and correlations were used to determine relationships between continuous variables.
Results: In total, 207 (86.2% response rate) questionnaires were completed. The median knowledge score was 46.3% (mean 45.8 ± 13.7%, range 6.3–81.2%). Only one participant achieved the target score of ≥ 80%, and 16.3% scored ≥ 60%. No significant differences were found between knowledge and professional rank (p = 0.14) and knowledge and years of working experience (r = −0.01; p = 0.85). A positive attitude towards EN was found and 96.1% of participants expressed the need for additional in-service training.
Conclusion: The nursing personnel have inadequate EN knowledge, irrespective of their professional rank and experience. However, they are perceived to have positive attitudes towards the importance and administration of EN. Therefore, inservice training should be conducted regularly to mitigate the gap in knowledge.
Keywords: attitude, enteral nutrition, knowledge, military hospital, nursing personnel, practice

How to Cite
Ramuada, L., Veldsman, L., Livhuwani, N., & Blaauw, R. (2023). Assessment of knowledge, attitude and practice of nurses regarding enteral nutrition at a military hospital. South African Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 36(2), 63–69. Retrieved from
Original Research