Year of Publication

2017

Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice

Committee Chair

Dr. Leslie Scott

Clinical Mentor

Dr. Karen Hill

Committee Member

Dr. Dianna Inman

Abstract

PURPOSE: Research surrounding topics in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit have long been focused on mortality and morbidity of this population. However, consideration of the parent-infant relationship and subsequently adverse outcomes that could be formed during the intensive care stay should be examined. Parent empowerment programs in the NICU have been shown to decrease length of stay, parental stress, and depression. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the impact of the COPE for HOPE parent empowerment program on length of stay, parental stress, maternal depression, and parent satisfaction in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit with parents of infants who are born less than 35 weeks gestation.

METHODS: This study was a separate pre-post sample design comparing length of stay, parental stress, maternal depression, and parent satisfaction in two different groups. The first group, before COPE for HOPE program implementation, and the second group is with the intervention. The two groups are assessed using the Parental Stressor Scale: NICU, the Edinburgh Maternal Depression Scale, and the Baptist Lexington Parent Satisfaction Survey.

RESULTS: The COPE for HOPE intervention group resulted in statistically significant decrease in parental stress compared to the group without the intervention. There was not a significant difference found in length of stay, maternal depression or parental satisfaction between the two groups.

CONCLUSION: After implementing a parent empowerment program in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit with parents of infants born at less than 35 weeks gestation, there is a significant decrease in parental stress compared to a group of parents without the program. Although there was not a significant difference in length of stay, maternal depression and parent satisfaction, more studies with larger sample sizes should be completed to explore these variables.

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