Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to identify the information needs of nurses in two hospitals in Nigeria and the ways in which they went about attempting to meet those needs. Design/methodology/approach: The study is a descriptive survey of nurses at the Federal Medical Center (FMC), Yenagoa, and Niger Delta University Teaching Hospital (NDU-TH), Okolobiri, in Bayelsa State, Nigeria. Findings: The main reasons that motivated nurses to search for information were better patient care, improved medication administration, and better job performance. The main types of information needed by the nurses were how to avoid contracting HIV-AIDS from patients, information about the outbreak of diseases and new discoveries in nursing. They were hampered by their inability to access foreign nursing journals and a lack of awareness of how to use medical databases. This could be due to a lack of funding to subscribe to local and foreign journals, and lack of education and training in the skills of using medical databases. Originality/value: This type of information may prove useful to decision makers such as unit managers, directors of nursing services, and hospital executives. © Emerald Group Publishing Limited.
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