Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School

Graduate Nursing

First Advisor

Phyllis Meyer


The losses and stresses of the elderly make them susceptible to powerlessness which ultimately may lead to hopelessness and death. The use of client initiated interventions designed to increase the individual's control of the environment may interrupt the powerlessness, hopelessness and death cycle. The research question for this study addressed the influence of client-initiated interventions on the hopelessness score among the institutionalized elderly.
The specific research questions were:
I. To what extent do the use of client-initiated interventions affect the level of hopelessness in the institutionalized client on a short- and long-term basis?
2. Which of the client-initiated interventions have an effect on the level of hopelessness?
3. What is the association of select individual characteristics and change in hopelessness scores?
The research hypothesis was: Following the institution of client-initiated interventions, the level of hopelessness will decrease in the institutionalized elderly client.
The sample included 17 elderly adults (over 60 years of age) in a midwestern state hospital. The Geriatric Hopelessness Scale was used to obtain a hopelessness score. An intervention was chosen by the subject, and two post-tests were administered at specific intervals to determine if the chosen interventions had any affect on the hopelessness score.
Based on analysis of variance and Chi-square analysis, the following conclusions were made.
1. Client-initiated interventions had no effect on the hopelessness score on a long- or short-term basis.
2. Interventions that allow choice are viewed positively by the client.
3. Sex was associated with change in hopelessness scores with females showing an improvement over time.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Older people -- Institutional care -- Psychological aspects
Older people -- Mental health



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


In Copyright - Non-Commercial Use Permitted

Included in

Nursing Commons