Date of Graduation

Winter 12-15-2017

Document Type

Project

Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)

College/School

School of Nursing and Health Professions

Department/Program

Nursing

Program

Family Nurse Practitioner

First Advisor

Dr. Jo Loomis

Second Advisor

Dr. Melanie Kieffer

Third Advisor

Dr. Lisa Sabatini

Abstract

Problem: Falls in the community dwelling older adult (CDOA) are a growing health concern, placing large financial and social burdens. Primary care providers (PCPs) are not engaging in falls assessment and prevention activities due to the lack of knowledge and time. Context: Falls are the leading cause of fatal and nonfatal injuries, and is projected to worsen with the increase in the aging population. STEADI is a fall assessment and prevention toolkit created by the CDC to tackle this problem designed to address the knowledge and practice gaps of PCPs. Interventions: A DNP project was crafted and implemented to train Advanced Practice Nurses to be proficient in falls risk assessment and prevention using STEADI. The educational program took place in two different settings and consisted of a PowerPoint presentation, case studies, and creation of a falls simulation. Measures: Metrics included a post interventional participant questionnaire which evaluated fall/STEADI knowledge, confidence, intent to incorporate fall assessments, and potential barriers to following fall prevention guidelines. Results: Participants were more knowledgeable, confident, and were more likely to comply with fall prevention guidelines using STEADI materials to assess falls in the CDOA. Conclusions: Screening and managing risk factors to prevent the occurrence of falls is imperative in reducing the traumatic and non-traumatic injuries in the CDOA. Using the STEADI Toolkit and algorithm is an effective mechanism to increase PCPs confidence and compliance in utilizing fall assessment and prevention measures, and may have an effect on reducing the occurrence of falls in this population.

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