n Africa Journal of Nursing and Midwifery - Knowledge and communication of the national core standards tool - article

Volume 20 Number 2
  • ISSN : 1682-5055



The National Department of Health in South Africa has introduced the National Core Standards (NCS) tool to improve the quality of healthcare delivery in all public healthcare institutions. Knowledge of the NCS tool is essential among healthcare providers. This study investigated the level of knowledge on NCS and how the NCS tool was communicated among professional nurses. This was a cross-sectional survey study. Purposive sampling technique was used to select hospitals that only offered tertiary services in KwaZulu-Natal. Six strata of departments were selected using simple stratified sampling. The population of professional nurses in the selected hospitals was 3 050. Systematic random sampling was used to recruit 543 participants. The collected data were analysed using SPSS version 25. The study showed that only 16 (3.7%) respondents had knowledge about NCS, using McDonald’s standard of learning outcome measured criteria regarding the NCS tool. The Pearson correlation coefficient between the communication and knowledge was r = 0.055. The results revealed that although the communication scores for the respondents were high their knowledge scores remained low. This study concluded that there is a lack of knowledge regarding the NCS tool and therefore healthcare institutions need to commit themselves to the training of professional nurses regarding the NCS tool. The findings suggest that healthcare institutions implement the allocation of incentives for nurses that attend the workshops for NCS.

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