Date of Conferral
Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
Anne T. Vitale
Patients with cancer who receive bone marrow transplants (BMT) are at increased risk for central line-associated blood stream infections (CLABSI), a serious complication leading to increased costs, length of stay, and even death. Recognition of an increased CLABSI rate at one BMT unit in the southwestern United States prompted development of an evidence-based staff development education program to improve nurses’ knowledge of central line maintenance and CLABSI prevention practices. Guided by Lewin change theory, the program was developed based on a nurse-led analysis and synthesis of the evidence, and a formative evaluation of the educational program conducted by a 3-member expert panel made up of the BMT director, a BMT clinical nurse specialist and vascular access team member. The review confirmed the lack of standardized evidence-based guidelines for central venous catheter care, that any patient who has a central line is at risk for CLABSI, and BMT patients are at particular risk due to frequency of catheter manipulation. Findings reinforced the need for the recommendations to educate nurses in BMT settings on evidence-based central line practices, evaluate knowledge gained, and audit practice techniques post education. The social change implication of this DNP project will be the potential decrease in healthcare costs, length of stay, and mortality associated with central line infections when nursing staff are provided an educational program that aims to improve their knowledge and skills of evidence-based central line care and CLABSI prevention practices.