Date of Conferral



Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)




Janice M. Long


The use of antipsychotic medications in persons with dementia has been shown to increase mortality in long-term care (LTC) patients. National guidelines recommend the use of nonpharmacological interventions when possible for LTC residents with dementia. Nurses who work in a local LTC facility are not regularly trained in effective nonpharmacological interventions and lack the knowledge to provide care for patients with dementia. To provide safe and effective alternative interventions to antipsychotic medication use, nurses and direct care staff must have current, evidence-based education available to them about alternative practices. The purpose of this staff education project, guided by Calista Roy’s adaptation model and Kirkpatrick’s evaluation model, was to develop an education program using a pretest posttest design for LTC nurses on the use of nonpharmacological interventions for LTC residents with dementia. The project focused question asked whether an education program on nonpharmacological interventions would increase the knowledge level of nurses who work in long term care settings. A PowerPoint education program on nonpharmacological interventions and the dangers of antipsychotic medications was presented to 12 nurses in an LTC facility in the Northern United States. Pretests and posttests were administered to determine the efficacy of the education. Data were analyzed descriptively. Results showed an improvement in posttest scores compared to pretest scores with mean score of 74% pretest and 95% posttest. By increasing nurses’ knowledge with nonpharmacological interventions in the LTC setting, positive social change may result as patient care is improved and antipsychotic medication use is reduced.

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