Date of Award

Summer 2022

Document Type

Final DNP Paper

Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) in Family Nurse Practitioner



Faculty Chair

Dr. Jolie Wildinger


Dr. Lynnette Hall


Background: Heart failure (HF) is a clinical diagnosis that affects about 1 to 2% of the population worldwide. Poor education regarding self-care behaviors after discharge has contributed to increased readmissions after acute hospitalization. Hospital readmissions cost is approximately one hundred thousand dollars. This increase in cost has forced the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service (CMS) to place penalties on organizations with high readmission rates. The organization may be penalized for increases in readmission rates by decreasing the percentage of the combined total Medicare payments received from the CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services [CMS], 2021)

Purpose: The purpose of this Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) project is to incorporate a simplified discharge brochure on HF using evidence-based practice (EBP) from the American Heart Association's (AHA) "Get with The Guidelines." The outcome was assessed by evaluating measures which increased patient knowledge of heart failure and self-care management to reduce rehospitalization rates.

Methods: This quality improvement (QI) project utilized a condensed and detailed HF brochure created by the DNP planner using the AHA “Get with The Guidelines” offered to patients to promote learning, self-care, and compliance to reduce rehospitalizations in the acute care setting. The DNP student conducted an educational session for inpatient HF patient. A pre-and post- questionnaire Likert scale was used to assess patient knowledge and self-care habits. Fisher’s Exact Tests were utilized to assess the statistical significance of a change in knowledge pre-and post-intervention.

Results: Results showed an increase in participant knowledge after the intervention. Data collection indicated that 87.5% of participants understood their diagnosis of HF and how to provide self-care after the educational intervention compared to 7.1 % before the educational intervention.

Conclusion: This DNP project helped to increase participants’ HF knowledge in the acute care setting by implementing education with a pre-questionnaire and a post-questionnaire to assess the outcomes of the intervention. This project has the potential to increase the current knowledge base of HF patients by educating patients on the disease process, self-care management, and the proper therapeutic regimen.

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