Year of Publication

2022

Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice

Committee Chair

Dr. Sheila Melander

Clinical Mentor

Dr. Chizimuzo Okoli

Committee Member

Dr. Geri Sipe

Abstract

PURPOSE: To provide education on high suicide rates within the healthcare community, screen providers for suicide risk factors, and disseminate mental health resources at the University of Kentucky Chandler Medical Center (UKCMC). The goal of this intervention is to increase awareness and provide resources to providers to essentially decrease these suicide rates.

METHODS: A randomized controlled trial was used with a non-equivalent group pretest-posttest survey design to examine the effect of an education module about suicide risk factors. Along with a rating of how COVID-19 affected mental health, a Patient Health Questionnaire 9 (PHQ-9) was implemented, and mental health resources were distributed. Follow-up surveys were conducted to assess the impact of the original education on mental health outcomes.

RESULTS: Statistically significant positive correlations were found between treatment groups on the knowledge of suicide risk factors measure but not on the PHQ-9 scores. There were significantly greater mean knowledge scores in the experimental group compared to the control group. Significant associations were not found between gender or credentials on post-education scores, PHQ-9 scores, or ratings of how COVID-19 has affected their mental health. Significant correlations were found between years of experience and PHQ-9 scores with a positive correlation suggesting that as years of experience increase, PHQ-9 scores decrease. Most participants reported favorability of conducting annual screenings at UKCMC.

CONCLUSION: Providing education increased knowledge scores on suicide risk factors. Results suggest that annual screenings may be acceptable to healthcare providers along with offering education and resources on mental health services. Further research is warranted to include larger sample sizes, referrals, and analyze barriers to providers seeking mental health help with the overall goal of decreasing suicide rates among healthcare providers.

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