Document Type



Doctor of Nursing Practice



Date of Defense


Graduate Advisor

Susan Dean-Baar, PhD, RN, FAAN


Mary E. Hartman, MD, MPH

Rick Yakimo, PhD, RN


Background: Family members of children hospitalized in the pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) can develop cognitive, psychological, and physical manifestations of post-intensive care syndrome (PICS). Targeted education to help parents/caregivers recognize the signs and symptoms of PICS may result in better awareness of the syndrome and greater willingness to seek and receive support during their child’s PICU admission.

Objective: to evaluate three targeted PICS educational interventions to increase PICS awareness among parents/caregivers in the St. Louis Children’s Hospital (SLCH) PICU.

Results: A total of 62 parents/caregivers received one of three educational interventions: informational brochures (n=22), scripted informational conversation (n=20), or three-minute educational video (n=20). An additional 19 bedside nurses completed surveys to describe how each educational intervention affected daily work flow. Changes in parental/caregiver PICS fund of knowledge was evaluated using Fischer’s exact test. All three educational interventions were associated with a significant improvement in understanding of PICS, with no single intervention being superior. Nursing surveys indicated that work flow was minimally disrupted using PICS education and that all interventions were perceived to be important and useful.

Conclusions: Targeted educational interventions led to improvement in knowledge about PICS among parents/caregivers and were well supported by PICU nursing staff. Thus, providing support for a sustainable implementation of PICS education in the SLCH PICU.