Date of Conferral



Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)




Sue Bell


Gestational diabetes mellitus occurs in up to 10% of pregnancies and often leads to labor and delivery complications for both the mother and the baby. Early identification of gestational diabetes and educational intervention are needed to improve the self-management and knowledge among pregnant women. The purpose of the project was to implement newly established national guidelines to ensure that women with gestational diabetes are identified during the first trimester of pregnancy and begin diabetes education early in gestation. Lewin's planned change theory was selected as the theoretical framework, and the six sigma approach was used to facilitate the change process. The project used a pretest and posttest design in a convenience sample of 35 women with gestational diabetes who were referred for the educational intervention and completed the education and the questionnaires. The anticipated outcomes were for (a) women to be screened during the first trimester of their pregnancy and (b) the post education scores on the self-management questionnaire to demonstrate an increase in knowledge about contacting the provider for abnormal blood sugar results and making appropriate dietary choices. Data were entered into SPSS and were analyzed using descriptive statistics. A t test was used to compare pretest and posttest knowledge scores. During the project, 57% of the participants were screened in the first trimester of pregnancy. The difference in the pretest (M = 75.43) and the posttest scores (M = 91.71) was statistically significant (p < .0001). These findings have important social change implications because early screening and early intervention will help to reduce birth complications and long-term development of Type 2 diabetes.

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