Date of Conferral
Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
Heart failure (HF) readmissions create a financial burden for healthcare nationwide and speak to the lack of effective discharge preparation for patients to be successful with self-care at home. The 183-bed hospital where this DNP quality initiative will take place currently reports an observed-over-expected (O/E) readmission rate for HF patients (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid [CMS]). Core measures on HF developed by the Joint Commission and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services do not appear to be enough to ensure successful transitions of care from hospital to home. Guided by the LOGIC model, the purpose of this quality improvement initiative was to develop a HF educational module to improve patients' readiness to learn in order to promote self-care and prevent readmission to the hospital within 30 days. The design of the educational program was supported by the evidence-based literature and incorporated best practices promoted by the Joint Commission, the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. Content evaluation of the newly developed HF educational program was conducted by 10 experts using a quantitative Likert-type scale and qualitative narrative feedback. Descriptive findings from the Likert scale showed a range of 3.9 to 4.0 in the content, process, and design of the program. Recommendations for improvement included more detail around pathophysiology, as well as how to initiate the process in the outpatient setting. Positive social change can result from the program which offers a relevant strategy to reduce readmissions for HF and has wide-application options for many chronic illnesses that can be better managed through effective discharge teaching.