Doctor of Nursing Practice
Date of Defense
Cathy Koetting, DNP, APRN, CPNP, PMHS, FNP-C College of Nursing
Anne Thatcher, DNP, MSW, APRN, PMHNP-BC, LMSW
Veronica Powers, DNP, APRN, PMHNP-BC
Benzodiazepine Reduction Program in a Psychiatric Mental Health Setting
The purpose of this pilot project was to reduce side effects and adverse effects of long-term benzodiazepines (BZDs) use in a non-profit community health center. This was a quality improvement project. The evidence-based practice (EBP) framework identified for the project was from the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) framework to decrease BZD use in a non-profit community health center. This model is focused on four stages: 1) gathering a proactive healthcare team to examine and identify solutions to reduce BZD usage, 2) testing the pilot program that the team develops, 3) use of the data and methods to study the outcomes and results, 4) systematize the BZD reduction plan and establish future plans to improve patient outcomes. The primary outcome measure of interest was to decrease BZD prescribing by providers. The secondary outcome measure of interest was decreased adverse events in patients who are prescribed BZDs over the time period of the project. Education of patients in safe BZD use and safe provider prescribing was done to educate both groups. Recommending Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and first-line medications for anxiety, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and other mental health disorders can help with the tapering of BZD medications for patients. This quality improvement project was successful at decreasing the amount of long-term BZD prescriptions over the four-month timeframe.
Pacini, Tracy, "Benzodiazepine Reduction Program in a Psychiatric Mental Health Setting" (2021). Dissertations. 1121.