Date of Conferral



Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)




Mary Verklan


Certified nurse aides provide approximately 65% of care to more than 1.4 million older adults residing in nursing homes who have been diagnosed with 1 or more chronic illnesses or debilitating conditions. Licensed nurses rely on nurse aides to report potentially harmful status changes in geriatric residents. Nurse aides often receive limited education and do not have a structured care process to guide them in their practice in the geriatric population. The purpose of this educational quality improvement project was to develop a geriatric-specific nurse aide care process to increase the knowledge of student nurse aides regarding processes to identify and observe potentially harmful status changes in geriatric residents, and what changes to report immediately to a licensed nurse. The knowledge-to-action model was used to address the practice problem and to guide the translation of this evidence-based project into practice. The methodology used to guide data collection and analysis was a 1-group, quasi experimental, pretest/posttest design to compare participants' knowledge before the intervention with their learning outcomes after the educational intervention was implemented. The findings revealed an increase in the knowledge of student nurse aides after the educational intervention. The project may promote social change on an organizational level by demonstrating the need for a structured geriatric care process for nurse aides prior to their entry into the long-term care workforce to improve care outcomes for geriatric residents. The project may involve social change at the state level because incorporating this process may require additional hours in the nurse aide education program curriculum.

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Nursing Commons