Date of Award
College or School
Program or Major
Direct Entry Masters of Nursing
Master of Science
Postpartum discharge education is essential in the care of mothers, newborns, and their families as they transition from the hospital setting to home. The U.S Department of Health and Human Services has identified postpartum discharge education content as a public health priority to reduce physical and mood-related postpartum complications. Over half of all serious morbidity and mortality complications occur after a postpartum patient leaves the hospital. It is essential that hospitals utilize the best evidence-based practices to maximize the impact of patient education during maternity care in the hospital.
Within the given microsystem there is a need to streamline and standardize the discharge process to ensure equity in the resources provided to patients to improve maternal and newborn health.
Using a two-phase Plan-Do-Study-Act model, a quality improvement project was developed to both streamline and standardize the current discharge process.
Using data from a pre-intervention nursing staff survey, a new streamlined and standardized nursing process was developed. Intervention was studied using quantitative Likert style questions and qualitative free text survey questions.
Before the implementation of standardization, 86% of nurses interviewed disagreed or strongly disagreed that it was easy to find appropriate discharge education, while after the intervention 0% of nurses disagreed or strongly disagreed with 87% of nurses agreeing or strongly agreeing that it was easy to find needed education material. Prior to the standardization and streamlining intervention, 82% of nurses expressed barriers, while after the intervention only 13% of nurses noted barriers in the discharge process.
The quality improvement project resulted in better standardization and streamlining of the postpartum education process with more nurses finding the process more accessible to navigate. These changes can result in more productivity overall which will allow nurses to focus more on time spent with the patient during the education process. Standardization not only ensures equity but will allow nurses to become more familiar with the high-quality evidence-based materials they present to patients.
Keywords: Discharge, education, discharge process, postpartum education, standardization, streamline
Cook, Shea N., "Streamlining the Postpartum Educational Process for Safe and Equitable Patient Care: A Quality Improvement Initiative" (2023). Master's Theses and Capstones. 1667.