Date of Award

Summer 2021

Document Type

Final DNP Paper

Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)



Faculty Chair

Dr. Betsy Gulledge, PhD, RN, CNE, NEA-BC


Dr. Jutta Beams, DNP, RN, NEA-BC, CNL


Dr. Leigh Ann Keith, DNP, MSN, RN, COI


Background: Unsustainable behavioral health education focused on comprehensive suicide risk assessment performance contributes to decreased registered nurses’ perceived self-efficacy in assessing and caring for suicidal patients.

Purpose: To educate medical-surgical and progressive care registered nurses in assessing patients for suicide risk factors and warning signs comprehensively.

Design Method: A quasi-experimental designed quality improvement project with evidence-based suicide educational program implementation. Project results yielded a 56.7% increase in registered nurses’ perceived self-efficacy in assessing and caring for suicidal patients. Future DNP work will focus on sampling a larger population (N) to decrease opportunities for the skewness of project results and statistical significance.

Conclusion: Addressing the need for comprehensive suicide risk assessment education is the key to enhancing registered nurse performance in achieving high- quality, holistic suicide patient care outcomes.

Implications for Nursing: Sustainment of DNP scholarly project results will shape future nursing practice, guided by continuous monitoring of quality improvement indicators and initiatives, including oversight and support from DNP organizational stakeholders.

Keywords: nursing, suicide, risk, assessment, self-efficacy


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