Date of Conferral
Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
A large healthcare system in Texas mandated scripting as way to improve patient satisfaction. The purpose of this project was to incorporate a caring moment into scripting by the nursing staff to improve patient satisfaction. The project was guided by Watson's caring theory, the adult learning theory, and Lewin's planned change theory. All 35 nurses from the primary care and specialty care outpatient clinics of the Texas healthcare system participated in a staff development training to learn how to incorporate a caring moment into their script. Of these 35 nurses, 13 (37%) chose to complete the pre-education and postproject surveys. The pre-education survey indicated that nurses (30%) used the scripting almost all the time or all the time with each nurse-patient interaction. At the end of the project, the postproject survey resulted in 12 (92%) nurses who used the script almost all or all the time. At the end of the project the Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set Patient Satisfaction Survey data indicated a 1% decrease in satisfaction with communication, a 9% increase in self-management support, and a 1% increase in care coordination. There was no statistical difference in the patient satisfaction scores over the project's 3-month time frame. Staff development training may lead to a positive social change for patient care as a result of nurses' understanding that interacting in a caring manner with patients makes a positive difference in patient satisfaction. The Texas health care system nurses realize that they can apply Watson's caring theory to guide nursing practice and to express caring for patients' physical and emotional needs during the outpatient appointments.