The purpose of this study was to develop a problem situation unit that could be used for stimulating graduate nurses to assume their responsibility regarding the use of pain and anxiety relieving drugs, namely narcotics, tranquilizers, and barbiturates.

The general use of these drugs presents a danger to public health when they are used indiscriminately. Therefore, nurses should be informed as to their responsibility to the doctor, the patient, and to themselves in regard to the use of these drugs.

This study was developed by presenting briefly the following:

  1. Principles and history of group discussion and problem situation unit teaching;

  2. A survey of professional literature to support the validity of the problem situation unit topic on drugs;

  3. The steps taken in developing the unit;

  4. Detailed instructions and material for actually giving the problem situation unit, which was called the Period on Quality Nursing;

  5. Testing, analyzing, and refining the unit.

When the unit was tried out on two groups, reports were received from the nurses indicating their reaction as to the effectiveness of the Period on Quality Nursing. The combined estimate of the groups indicated that about ninety-two percent participated in the discussion of the problem; ninety-eight per cent believed the problem was important to nursing; while almost ninety-five per cent believed the unit could be used in in-service education programs for graduate nurses, with some indicating they thought it more appropriate for students of nursing.

As a matter of interest to see if there was any change of behavior, the nurses were asked to keep a record of the narcotics, tranquilizers, and barbiturates given over an equal period of time before and after the Period on Quality Nursing was given. The number of those drugs reported after the teaching period was less than those reported before, the actual number of patients was exactly the same in each group. The results may have been influenced by the kind of patients and the carefulness of the nurses in reporting the drugs given. However, it did indicate that probably there was some change of behavior.

Since this Period on Quality Nursing did stimulate active participation, a high percentage of those participating did believe the problem was important to nursing, that it could be used in in-service education programs, and since it seemed to stimulate some change of behavior, and because these are desirable goals in in-service education, it can be concluded that one would feel encouraged to use this Period on Quality Nursing.

LLU Discipline





Graduate Studies

First Advisor

Anne P. Martin

Second Advisor

Kathryn J. Nelson

Third Advisor

Catherine N. Graf

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Degree Level


Year Degree Awarded


Date (Title Page)




Library of Congress/MESH Subject Headings

Nursing -- education; Substance Abuse -- education



Page Count

vii; 86

Digital Format


Digital Publisher

Loma Linda University Libraries

Usage Rights

This title appears here courtesy of the author, who has granted Loma Linda University a limited, non-exclusive right to make this publication available to the public. The author retains all other copyrights.


Loma Linda University Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Collection Website



Loma Linda University. Del E. Webb Memorial Library. University Archives