Date of Conferral



Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)




Mark Wells


One of the key ethical principles in nursing is the promotion of health and wellness and ensuring that patients are free from unnecessary pain and suffering. It is estimated that at least 65% of patients in skilled nursing centers in the United States report the presence of pain, indicating that there are opportunities for improvement with effective pain management within this practice setting. A key factor that has been identified as an opportunity for improvement is education for clinical staff who practice within this setting. This Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP) project provided education to a group of clinical team members to determine its impact on knowledge related to effective pain management. This education was provided in a skilled nursing center located in a rural area of central Georgia. A review of the center’s publicly reported quality indicators in pain management, baseline knowledge test, and an interview with the center’s nursing director assisted in the identification of practice gaps requiring additional education. The goal of the education was to ensure that the clinical team members were educated on appropriate assessment, effective interventions, and the importance of interprofessional collaboration for effective pain management. Participants in this education included 26 licensed nurses. After completion of the education, results from pre- and post-tests were analyzed and showed that 31% of the participants increased their level of pain management knowledge. This increase in knowledge can support improved patient outcomes and positive social change by ensuring that effective strategies for managing pain are present to improve the overall quality of life for patients in skilled nursing settings.

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Nursing Commons