Date of Graduation

Fall 12-11-2020

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)


School of Nursing and Health Professions




Population Health Leadership

First Advisor

Dr. Juli Maxworthy

Second Advisor

Dr. Barbara Sattler


Valley Fever: Educating Primary Care Providers and Allied Healthcare Professionals


Problem: Coccidioidomycosis (cocci), informally Valley Fever (VF), infects the lungs with the fungal spore coccidioides. It is prevalent in areas where soil disturbance occurs. Currently, there are no related educational or standardized guidelines exist for primary care providers (PCPs) in California’s Central Valley, where VF is highly endemic (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2018).

Context: A Doctor of Nursing Practice project educational program for PCPs and allied healthcare workers (AHWs) at the Adventist Health Central Valley Network (AHCVN) clinics. The project aimed to educate PCPs to recognize, test, diagnose, and treat high-risk patients of VF expeditiously.

Interventions: A virtual presentation for PCPs and AHWs on the history, symptoms, risk factors, preventative measures, and a treatment algorithm for VF.

Measures: Pre/post surveys determined changes in knowledge and confidence levels. Common clinical scenarios informed courses of recommenced treatments.

Results: Forty participants attended the session. Results indicated increased knowledge by 12.63%.

Conclusions: PCPs have scant knowledge on VF, resulting in increased patient morbidity and expenditures. The VF program was of particular interest for this group of providers based on the geographical location and a vulnerable population. AHCVN included four clinics in rural Fresno County. Screening, diagnosing, and treating VF improved following the educational program based on the post knowledge survey scores of 12.63%.

Keywords: algorithm, coccidioidomycosis, dust exposure, risk factors, valley fever