Date of Conferral
Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
Clinical competency is an important factor when delivering care to those with chronic conditions such as multiple sclerosis. Vitamin D therapy through diet, supplements, and sunlight may decrease physical complications. The gap in practice this doctoral project addressed is the lack of education provided to healthcare professionals to promote the benefits of vitamin D. The project examined whether registered nurses who are provided education on the benefits of vitamin D therapy can apply the knowledge into the plan of care for patients with MS within 6 months versus those provided no education. Paradigms and models that were used include the health belief model, and Rodgers’ evolutionary theory. An extensive literature review was conducted to determine evidence-based best practices. A quantitative method design was used with a random sample of 108 participants. The Vitamin D Questionnaire was a 10-question pre-/posttest that assessed knowledge of sun exposure, dietary supplements, and nutrition. Using a t test and chi-square test, the extrapolated de-identified data showed an increase in scores when comparing the pre- (53.0%) and posttest (96.9%) scores, indicating a gap in knowledge. The t statistic showed a p value coefficient higher than 0.7 (p = 0.135), a variance of 0.0047 (posttest) and 0.032 (pretest). The chi-square test showed no association between gender and formal training. Recommendations include educating healthcare professionals on vitamin D and implementing standard guidelines for practice for clinicians. The potential implication for positive social change is decreasing the use of prescribed medication. Addressing this problem may decrease the expense of government-funded research costs and enhance the quality of life at the individual level.