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Date of Graduation
Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
School of Nursing
Problem: The peri-discharge period for patients can be a complex and dangerous time. A large urban academic medical center with a readmission rate approaching 16% utilizes a standardized template called a Discharge Information Form (DIF) to convey information to inpatients at the time of their discharge. The problem is a lack of individualization with a universal template such as the DIF. Moreover, the readability and literacy level of the DIF have not been previously assessed.
Methods: A random sample of DIFs was assessed for literacy level using the Flesch-Kincaid Readability Test Tool. An in-person educational intervention was administered to a sample of Hospital Medicine Advanced Practice Providers with the objective of improving their understanding of DIF readability. The providers completed the Continuing Professional Development-Reaction Questionnaire before and after the educational intervention to assess clinical behavioral intentions. One-month post intervention a survey was administered to assess self-reported behavior change, and descriptive statistics were used to look for trends in these data. DIFs were also reassessed for readability, and a paired sample t-test was performed to determine if a change occurred.
Findings: After the intervention, statistically significant differences were found in the construct of social influence (p=0.040). Grade level of DIFs was significantly improved (p=0.001), readability of DIFs was nearly significantly improved (p=0.051), and the majority of providers self-reported behavior change.
Conclusion: Providers responsible for creating patient discharge information should know how to write literacy level appropriate materials. There is an opportunity to improve discharge information readability through inpatient provider education.
Balzer, Amber V., "The effect of provider education on discharge information grade level and readability" (2019). Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Final Clinical Projects, 2016-2019. 34.