Date of Conferral
Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
Staffing turnover created a challenge for the women’s services department of a hospital in the southern United States, potentially compromising care for women and infants during childbirth. The gap in practice was the lack of a structured nurse orientation/residency program for nurses new to perinatal nursing, which requires specific competencies not learned at the prelicensure level of education. The guiding practice-focused question was whether a multidisciplinary team could develop a formal evidence-based perinatal nurse residency program that would meet the needs of on-boarding and support for the new nursing hires at this facility. A team of experienced nurses, which included two nurses from labor and delivery, high risk antepartum, mother baby, and assistant nurse manager developed a comprehensive program, which included defined competencies, didactic materials, detailed simulations, and evaluation tools. A multidisciplinary team of six nurses, and the assistant nurse manager achieved consensus on the quality and comprehensive nature of the program plan using the Appraisal of Guidelines for Research and Evaluation Instrument II assessment tool. The implications of this project to bring about positive social change include the potential for improved nursing care for patients during childbirth as a result of increased nurse knowledge and mentoring support. Improved retention might also contribute to stable teamwork and peer support. This project has the potential to improve both physical and psychological outcomes for women and infants in the perinatal period.