Pettus, K. (2017). THE IMPACT OF AN ONLINE EDUCATIONAL INTERVENTION FOR NON-VA CIVILIAN NURSE PRACTITIONERS: A MEASURE OF COMFORT IN CARING FOR VETERANS. Unc Charlotte Electronic Theses And Dissertations.
Background: There is a nationwide focus on increasing awareness about veterans’ unique healthcare needs. The CHOICE Act allows eligible veterans to receive care from community healthcare providers; however, literature on effective methods to prepare non-VA civilian nurse practitioners (NPs) to care for veterans is lacking.Purpose: To develop an online educational intervention for non-VA civilian NPs and conduct a pilot study to evaluate its impact on comfort level in caring for this veterans. Methods: An online educational module was developed and a 10-item tool was used to assess comfort level before and after completing the module. A link to the online pilot study was emailed to 250 NPs in North Carolina and data was collected over 4 weeks. Results: A total of 11 non-VA civilian NPs participated. Wilcoxon signed rank tests were used to detect statistically significant changes. Mean scores for all 5 items measuring comfort level improved, with 3 reaching statistical significance: comfort level for discussing hazardous exposures (p = .038) and understanding and treating TBI (p = .046) and PTSD (p = .014). In addition, overall comfort level improved (p = 0.018). Conclusion: Pilot study findings indicated the online educational module did improve non-VA civilian NPs’ comfort level when caring for veterans. Results also indicated non-VA civilian NPs desire for education on caring for veterans and pretest scores showed low levels of comfort and familiarity for veteran-specific care. Continued research on preparing non-VA civilian NPs to care for veterans is essential.