Date of Conferral



Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)




Marilyn Losty


AbstractThe aging population in the United States continues to grow and, along with it, the need for informal caregivers. Informal caregivers provide ongoing assistance with activities of daily living to a friend or relative. Due to the sole responsibility of providing ongoing care, these individuals may experience burden and burnout, which has been defined as a state of emotional, mental, and physical exhaustion. Given the role that informal caregivers provide as part of the healthcare delivery system, caregiver burden and burnout are a public health issue. Nurse practitioners play a significant role in identifying caregiver burden and burnout, especially among those who provide care to the aging population. Guided by Watson’s theory of human caring, this project was conducted to determine if an educational intervention would increase knowledge among primary care nurse practitioners. Members of professional organization were targeted for this project, and 103 nurses volunteered to participate in the educational intervention. Following a pretest survey, participants reviewed a PowerPoint presentation on burden and burnout and completed a posttest survey. A dependent t-test indicated an increase in knowledge among nurse practitioners who participated in the educational intervention (t = – 17.06, p < 0.001). Additionally, there was increase in the nurse practitioners’ willingness to apply the Zarit Burden Scale to their practice (t = –4.25, p < 0.001) and an increase in the perceived impact of the Zarit Burden Scale on identifying burden and burnout in informal caregivers (t = –2.37, p < 0.05). This project contributes to social change by increasing the ability of nurse practitioners to identify burden and burnout among informal caregivers, which can lead to improving quality of life.

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Nursing Commons