Fall 2022

Document Type

Scholarly Project


College of Nursing

First Advisor

Sheryl Mitchell


Problem Statement: Emergency department (ED) nurses are routinely exposed to stressful events, including cardiac arrest codes. The American Heart Association stresses the importance of structured debriefing as a continuous quality improvement strategy for patient care. Furthermore, literature shows that debriefing after codes is associated with improved teamwork, decreased nursing burnout, and reduced staff turnover. Purpose: This quality improvement project implemented a structured postcode debriefing tool in the ED after codes to determine if it improved nurse burnout and patient survival rates. Methods: A structured postcode debriefing tool was administered after codes in the ED. All registered nurses employed in the ED at the project site were included in this project. Travel nurses were excluded from participating because they were not present for the entire eight weeks of the project. Participants voluntarily completed a self-reporting pre- and post-nursing survey. Results: No significant change was found in nursing burnout, as assessed by the CD-RISC-10 scale (matched t-test: 0.63337; Wilcoxon signed-rank test: 0.5314) and the non-proprietary single-item measure (matched t-test: 0.5816; Wilcoxon signed-rank test: 0.5816). There was no statical significance regarding code survival (Chi-Square test p = .1596, Fisher’s exact test p = .1374). Conclusion: While implementing the postcode debriefing did not significantly change nursing burnout or patient survival rates, almost all (93.3%) participants reported finding value in the postcode debriefing intervention. Most importantly, nurses identified topics on which they needed more education due to the postcode debriefing presented in this study. Other key findings were, missing quick reference cards from pediatric code carts, sources of possible delays in transferring patients out of the ED, and staff needing quick access to clean scrubs.

Included in

Nursing Commons