Public Health Nursing Practice Guidelines: An Evalution of Dissemination and Use

Authors

  • Betty Lia-Hoagberg Ph.D., R.N.,

    1. Betty Lia-Hoagberg is an Associate Professor, University of Minnesota School of Nursing, Minneapolis, Minnesota. Marjorie Schaffer is a Professor, Nursing Department, Bethel College, St. Paul, Minnesota. Susan Strohschein is a Consultant, Minnesota Department of Health, Section of Public Health Nursing, St. Paul, Minnesota.
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  • Marjorie Schaffer Ph.D., R.N.,

    1. Betty Lia-Hoagberg is an Associate Professor, University of Minnesota School of Nursing, Minneapolis, Minnesota. Marjorie Schaffer is a Professor, Nursing Department, Bethel College, St. Paul, Minnesota. Susan Strohschein is a Consultant, Minnesota Department of Health, Section of Public Health Nursing, St. Paul, Minnesota.
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  • Susan Strohschein R.N., M.S.

    1. Betty Lia-Hoagberg is an Associate Professor, University of Minnesota School of Nursing, Minneapolis, Minnesota. Marjorie Schaffer is a Professor, Nursing Department, Bethel College, St. Paul, Minnesota. Susan Strohschein is a Consultant, Minnesota Department of Health, Section of Public Health Nursing, St. Paul, Minnesota.
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Address correspondence to Betty Lia-Hoagberg, University of Minnesota School of Nursing, 6-101 Weaver-Densford Hall, 308 Harvard St. SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455. E-mail: liaho001@tc.umn.edu

Abstract

Public health nursing needs to build a practice on research-based knowledge. Public health guidelines are one strategy to achieve this goal. Using research-based knowledge, the Minnesota Practice Enhancement Project (MPEP) developed positive parenting and family violence prevention guidelines for public health nurses (PHNs). The purpose of this study was to evaluate the dissemination and use of the MPEP guidelines using a survey of PHNs and telephone interviews of public health nursing directors. Results indicated that respondents viewed the guidelines as important, but identified numerous barriers to integrating the guidelines into their practice. Major barriers included lack of time in their work day, complex guideline structure, and competing agency demands and priorities. Findings were consistent with Roger's Diffusion of Innovations theory, which describes factors associated with the adoption of a new idea or practice. Recommendations for effective dissemination include administrative support and structure to increase PHN intentional use of practice guidelines, a simplified guideline format, and mentorship in guideline use.

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