Document Type

DNP - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)


Graduate Nursing

First Advisor

Dr. Robin Arends


Confusion Assessment Method, delirium, delirium screening, delirium prevention, geriatric, nonpharmacologic delirium prevention


This project aimed to implement a nonpharmacologic delirium prevention protocol in a rural critical access hospital by increasing nursing confidence and knowledge with delirium. Research indicated delirium prevention was the cornerstone of management. The interventions proven beneficial in delirium prevention included: clinical staff education, bowel and bladder management, early removal of patient tethers, adequate nutrition and hydration, environmental cues and reorientation, sleep hygiene, music therapy, active family involvement, ensuring sensory aides were present in the hospital setting, and routine/interval screening for delirium using the Confusion Assessment Method (CAM) (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, 2014; Siddiqi et al., 2016). This DNP Project included a nursing education session, routine delirium screening utilizing the CAM, and a nonpharmacologic prevention protocol implemented on all admitted patients age 65 years and older. The results demonstrated increased clinical awareness and earlier identification of delirium; however, no statistically significant decrease in delirium incidence rates was achieved. The nursing education did statistically improve nurses’ confidence with delirium. Providing evidence-based nonpharmacologic delirium prevention techniques provided high quality healthcare, which, in time, has the potential to reduce delirium and its negative outcomes.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Delirium -- Diagnosis.
Delirium -- Prevention.


Includes bibliographical references



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


In Copyright - Educational Use Permitted

Included in

Nursing Commons