Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Projects

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Degree Program

Doctor of Nursing Practice

Degree Track

Adult Gerontological Primary Care Nurse Practitioner (AGPCNP)

Year Degree Awarded



Month Degree Awarded



Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), dyspnea, self-management, educational programs.


Terrie Black, DNP, MBA, CRRN, FAHA, FAAN

DNP Project Chair

Terrie Black, DNP, MBA, CRRN, FAHA, FAAN


Background: Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) exacerbation are reported to have a decreased quality of life relating to their health. In 2015 it was reported that over three million COPD patients died as a result of their disease. Although COPD patients are receiving medication, they still struggle with dyspnea as they carry out their daily activities.

Purpose: To implement an evidence-based educational program to assist COPD patients in self-management of dyspnea.

Methods: The DNP student obtained consent from prospective participants and assigned a unique identifier, which included his or her first and last initial and three digits. A total of 15 participants completed the project. The evidence-based educational tools included inhaler technique, assessment of medication adherence using the Four-point Morisky Adherence Scale (MMA-4), the Modified Borg Scale for patients to assess the severity of their dyspnea, and the St George Respiratory Questionnaire-C for self-reporting of their quality of life. A booklet entitled “What You Can Do About a Lung Disease called COPD” was used for information and as a visual aid for inhaled medications, nebulizers and inhalers.

Results: The results indicate that the expected outcomes were met with the exception of the Activity score on the SGRQ-C which had an average of 75 (poorer health).

Conclusion: An evidence-based educational program that covered topics such as COPD, smoking cessation, medication adherence, inhaler techniques, and a written action plan for acute exacerbation is effective in avoiding dyspnea symptoms Bourbeau et al., 2017). The development of a Medical Home Model is highly recommended and would be beneficial to COPD patients who are elderly and or too ill to leave their homes.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

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