The nursing education programme in Lithuania: voices of student nurses
The nursing education programme in Lithuania has passed through many changes. The latest change has been carried out with support from Denmark. Ten female student nurses have been interviewed with the assistance of an interpreter. The purpose of this paper is to describe how student nurses perceived their preregistration training. The most outstanding feature of the nursing education programme in Lithuania was lack of adequate textbooks and students found this disadvantage caused a heavy workload. Students were spending the whole day in school, then studying during the evening. They were constantly tired. Although students were encouraged to be independent and to think actively during lectures, in reality this was difficult because of their workload. Students as a group were satisfied with their education, but they were doubtful about how to manage work as an independent nurse. Nowadays, many nurses in Lithuania view their work professionally and have taken over responsibility for some tasks that were carried out previously by physicians. Nurses trained previously may cause problems for newly graduated nurses because these nurses still work in a traditional manner. It will be impossible to evaluate the usefulness of the new nursing education programme in Lithuania until further investigations show how students qualify and manage their work as nurses.