Document Type

Scholarly Project


College of Nursing

First Advisor

Alicia Ribar


Improvements in discharge instructions are necessary in emergency departments (EDs) across the United States (US). Multiple factors, such as the fast-paced environment and varying levels of acuity in the ED, contribute to inadequate discharge instructions and change is necessary to further prevent negative outcomes. The purpose of the evidence-based practice project was to implement post-discharge follow-up phone calls to ED patients to improve patient satisfaction scores regarding discharge instructions for at-home care and to reduce post-discharge complications. The project was implemented over a three-month period in early 2021 in the ED of a local hospital in Charleston, South Carolina (SC). An ED nurse called patients discharged to home 24 to 72 hours after discharge to follow-up on instructions and at-home care. The details of the call were based on a modified template from the Studer Group. The project was guided by the Relationship-based Care Model to create relationships with patients and/or caregivers to improve satisfaction and understanding of ED discharge instructions. Based on review and synthesis of the literature, post-discharge phone calls in the ED are recommended to improve patient satisfaction and reduce post-discharge complications. Descriptive statistics, chi-square tests, and fisher’s exact tests with a p-value of ≤ 0.05 were used to analyze the data and determine statistical significance. The University of South Carolina (USC) International Review Board (IRB) approval and IRB approval of the project site processes were completed prior to implementation and determined the project was exempt. All involved participants and their health information were protected by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPPA).


© 2021, SaraAnn K Fagan

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