Document Type



Doctor of Nursing Practice



Date of Defense


Graduate Advisor

Alicia Hutchings, Ph.D., RN, CNE


Alicia Hutchings, Ph.D., RN, CNE

Natalie L. Murphy, Ph.D., APRN, FNP-BC

Danielle Hull, MSW, LCSW



Purpose: The purpose of this program evaluation is to evaluate the effectiveness of a newly implemented safety planning intervention (SPI) tool, comparing patient outcomes relating to suicide attempt rates, emergency department (ED) encounter rates, and inpatient rehospitalizations rates pre and post its integration to care in a suburban behavioral health hospital.

Methods: A descriptive cohort design utilizing a retrospective chart review was completed over six months, three months pre, and three months post implementation of the SPI program. A convenience sample of inpatient charts was reviewed to assess the rate of suicide attempts, ED encounters frequencies, and hospitalization rates before and after the SPI program's deployment. The context, input, process, and product (CIPP) model of evaluation was utilized.

Results: A sample of 100 charts met study criteria. Sixty-four percent completed the SPI tool, 36% did not. There was a statistical reduction in the mean of emergency room encounters, inpatient admissions, suicide attempts, and post SPI implementation compared to pre (p < .001). Suicidal ideation, when compared to post to pre SPI reduced as well (p = .013). Depressive disorder subjects (86%, n = 55) were most likely to complete the SPI while Malingerers were least likely to do so (0%, n = 0).

Implications for Practice: This program evaluation appears to reveal the SPI tool's positive impact on patient outcomes. With the most substantial change visualized in actual suicide attempts, the integration of the SPI in a suburban behavioral health inpatient setting may be a life-preserving tool.