Date of Conferral



Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)




Dr. Cheryl McGinnis (chair)


Nurses are largely unaware of the problems of night-shift-nurse sleepiness and available strategies to manage night-shift sleepiness. The purpose of this project was to examine nurses' self-perception, awareness of sleepiness, and current strategies to manage this problem in the emergency medicine department of a major academic hospital in the western United States. The validated de-identified Karolinska Sleepiness Scale (KSS) was used to measure the prevalence and intensity of night shift nurses' sleepiness prior to the development of an educational program on strategies to manage sleepiness. Of the 164 registered nurses surveyed, 72 (43.9%) reported sleepiness greater than 7 on the KSS. An educational program was developed and evaluated by a panel of 6 experts who were selected on their clinical, educational, quality improvement, and research in sleep studies. Expert reviews indicated that the education program was 100% relevant, appropriate, and understandable, and provided adequate information on the topic with no recommended changes. The education program was presented to 16 night shift nurses with a pre/posttest survey completed by 14 nurses. Results indicated that participating nurses increased their knowledge of managing strategies for sleepiness from 69% (agree or strongly agree) preintervention to 92% postintervention. Postintervention, there was a 50% increase in the number of nurses who reported benefits from the education intervention. The findings of this project contribute to positive social change by improving nurses' health and quality patient care by advancing nurses' awareness of night shift sleepiness and countermeasure management strategies.