Type of Resources

Dissertation/Thesis

Date Created

12-3-2021

Abstract

ABSTRACT Bautch, Becky Marie. Healthcare Assessment Algorithms/Guides in Pandemic Eras: Capturing Critical Data (Aged 65 and Older). Unpublished Doctor of Nursing Practice Scholarly Research Project, University of Northern Colorado, 2021. The COVID-19 pandemic brought about many concerns for populations across the globe in terms of health and well-being including in the United States. It changed the way patients interact within society and limited access to resources that were once readily available. The American population had to adjust the way they go about what used to be considered normal and address challenges in a new era. Fear of the unknown and the mandated lockdowns in an attempt to stop the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) prevented normal standard healthcare visits for the population. Many patient interviews in primary care are being accomplished over the phone or through virtual online assessments, which limit the providers’ ability to get to the root of issues patients might be facing. Additionally, the older population (aged 65 years and older) might not be as versed in the technological methods utilized for communicating their healthcare needs, be it access to the resource or understanding how the system itself works. Many questionnaires are available to elicit direct answers in terms of identifying barriers and addressing optimal health in lockdown but very few practice algorithms are available to help providers navigate this complex and changing clinical situation. Critical questions are used to identify problem areas and help in understanding coping abilities used by the population in this new environment but what happens when the patients’ answers prompt further investigation or referral? The ability to provide alternative options for the older adult population, to ensure progress on the continuum of health in an era where community iv resources are affected by pandemic restrictions, is essential for optimization of care. The purpose of this Doctor of Nursing Practice scholarly research project was to develop and validate a standardized algorithm/guide to address and overcome the barriers faced by the population aged 65 years and older, particularly in the realm of mental health, nutrition, and physical activity to facilitate optimal patient care in pandemic environments such as those created by COVID-19 now and in the future. Review and validation by the multidisciplinary panel of experts reported the algorithms/guides were in-line with current evidence-based practice guidelines and directly relevant to the clinical practice setting. Keywords: pandemic, coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, COVID-19, epidemic, screening, guideline, medical algorithm, nutrition, physical activity, and mental health

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