Date Available


Year of Publication


Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice

Committee Chair

Dr. Melanie Hardin Pierce

Clinical Mentor

Dr. Darlene Welsh

Committee Member

Dr. Fran Hardin-Fanning

Committee Member

Dr. Darlene Welsh


The purpose of this project was to test the performance of albumin, NRI and MUST screening tools in comparison to the standardized measure of prealbumin among HF patients admitted to the University of Kentucky Chandler Medical Center. Inclusion criteria included all HF patients with the 428 diagnostic code, admitted from January 1, - December 31, 2013, ages 18 and older, with all laboratory values available specified in the data collection tool (Appendix A). A retrospective electronic medical record (EMR) review was performed for 100 patients who met the inclusion criteria. All data were collected through the University of Kentucky’s secure network via the EMR program Sunrise Clinical Manager. Serum albumin, prealbumin, MUST and NRI found 79, 85, 53 and 92 patients to be at nutritional risk, respectively. The NRI tool compared better with prealbumin than albumin and MUST, when screening for malnutrition in HF patients. The sensitivity of NRI compared to prealbumin was 92.9%. The results of this study provide evidence that NRI in combination with laboratory measures may be beneficial in identifying malnutrition among HF patients. There is still a need for further research into effective screening methods among this population.