Document Type

DNP - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)


Graduate Nursing

First Advisor

Dannica Callies


PPE, fit testing, lung disease, education


Background: Studies show an association between agricultural occupational hazards and respiratory illnesses. Personal protective equipment (PPE) has protective effects, but limited education and inadequate respiratory protection are common among agricultural workers.
Methods: A demographic questionnaire and two pre-intervention surveys were initially administered to farmers and ranchers. The surveys measured attitude, knowledge, and behaviors related to respiratory safety and PPE practices. Pulmonary function testing, educational handouts, and respirator fit testing was provided in a variety of settings, and one N95 mask was given to each participant. Two surveys were distributed 3 months post-intervention.
Results: The pre- and post-intervention surveys were matched and compared. Statistical significance was determined via a paired t-test. Overall, post-survey data showed improved attitudes, knowledge, and behaviors regarding respiratory PPE practices. Change in confidence to improve practices was not statistically significant.
Discussion: Project barriers included limited participation, harvest season, and hazardous weather. Improved attitudes, knowledge, and behaviors surrounding respiratory safety increased PPE use and may decrease respiratory symptoms.
Implications for Practice: Reducing agriculture-related respiratory diseases long-term is imperative. Rural healthcare providers should prioritize identifying risks of developing lung disease and addressing risks through education and encouraging PPE use.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Breathing apparatus.
Respiratory organs -- Protection.
Personal protective equipment.
Farmers -- Health and hygiene.
Ranchers -- Health and hygiene.
Farmers -- Attitudes.
Ranchers -- Attitudes.

Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


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