Author(s): Aleksander Zarzeka (ADE), Jaros?awa Belowska (DE), Karolina Kostrzewa (BE), Mariusz Panczyk (CD), Ilona Cie?lak (DF), Lucyna Iwanow (BD), Joanna Gotlib (AD)
Introduction. On January 1 2016, certain groups of Polish nurses and midwives gained competence to order medicines independently and issue prescriptions for them as well as to prescribe medicines ordered by a doctor and refer patients independently for certain diagnostic tests. Competences of midwives depend upon their level of education. Aim. The study was an attempt to analyze the level of knowledge of midwives working in the Mazovian region in Poland concerning new competences granted to this professional group regarding prescribing medicines. Material and methods. A survey was conducted between June 1 and September 30 2015 in a group of 129 midwives working in 5 hospitals in the Mazovian region, Poland. The mean age of the respondents was 46 years. The author’s own standardized questionnaire contained 13 questions with one correct answer. A qualitative and quantitative analysis of the results was conducted in the STATISTICA 12.5 (license of the Medical University of Warsaw). Results. Less than a half (45%) of the respondents were able to indicate the legal act which provides the list of medicines that can be prescribed by nurses or midwives independently. A half of the respondents (51%) did not know the criteria which a midwife must fulfill to order and prescribe medicines independently. Conclusions. The knowledge of midwives regarding new professional competences concerning ordering medicines, issuing prescriptions and referring patients for certain diagnostic tests is unsatisfactory and does not depend on the level of education. There is a need to update the knowledge of midwives regarding their new professional competences.