Knowledge, skills, and confidence among healthcare staff in urinary catheterization

Nikita R. Bhatt, Niall F. Davis, Hannah Thorman, Robert Brierly, Judy Scopes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction: There is an increasing volume of urology referrals for urinary catheterization (UC). The aim of this study was to determine the confidence and knowledge among healthcare staff on UC. We also assessed their satisfaction with training and support received during catheter education and clinical practice.

Methods: This was a mixed-methods model using an anonymous online survey circulated among all hospital staff. Weekly reminders were sent, quantitative data was obtained from closed-ended questions, and thematic analysis was performed for qualitative open-ended questions.

Results: The response rate was 26% (n=90/350), from a heterogenous group of doctors and nurses from various specialties and grades in the hospital and community frequently dealing with UC. There was decreasing confidence levels in female UC (54%, n=47/87), three-way catheters (33%, n=29/89), and managing suprapubic catheters (25%, n=21/85). Female UC was reported as the most difficult of catheter insertions (35%, n=31/90). Although 83% (n=74/89) of respondents received catheter education, 53% (n=48/90) felt this was insufficient for clinical practice. Fifty-one percent (n=45/89) believed more support with UC in clinical practice was required and 64% (n=57/89) recommended changes in catheter education. The most common theme identified was the need for ongoing education and more practical supervision in clinical practice.

Conclusions: Catheter training should focus on different types of catheters and management of difficult catheter scenarios. Standardizing safe catheter education during undergraduate training and including this as a part of regular annual or biannual mandatory training for healthcare staff involved in dealing with catheters in clinical practice would be the way forward.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of the Canadian Urological Association
Issue number9
Early online date12 Feb 2021
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2021


  • catheter
  • urethral
  • clinical skills
  • mandatory training
  • surgical training


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