Christine Moffa

Remaining in the Nursing Home Versus Transfer to Acute Care: Resident, Family, and Staff Preferences  

Tappen R., Worch S., Elkins D., Hain D., Moffa C., Sullivan G.(2014). Remaining in the Nursing Home Versus Transfer to Acute Care: Resident, Family, and Staff Preferences. J Gerontol Nurs. 40(10) 48-57. doi: 10.3928/00989134-20140807-01           

Resident and family insistence on transfer is a major factor in the occurrence of potentially avoidable transfers from nursing homes (NHs) to acute care. The purpose of this study was to explore resident, family, and staff preferences regarding transfer to acute care. A sample of 271 NH residents, family members, staff, and medical providers were interviewed. Seventy-seven percent of residents reported that they had not given any thought to the question of whether they would want to be transferred to acute care. Family members wanted more information than residents, but more residents (39%) thought they should be fully involved in the transfer decision than their family members (12%) or staff (12%). Staff preferred keeping residents in the NH. Families were divided between transferring residents and having them remain in the NH. More residents indicated that their desire to transfer would depend on the severity of their condition and their prognosis. Ethnic group differences were noted. Results suggest that discussion of this issue should occur soon after admission and that differences in perspectives may be expected from those involved.


Lessons Learned: Accessing the Voice of Nurses to Improve a Novice Nurse Program

Maresca, R., Eggenberger, T., Moffa, C., Newman, D (2015). Lessons Learned: Accessing the Voice of Nurses to Improve a Novice Nurse Program. Journal for Nurses in Professional Development, 31(4), 218 – 224.          

A novice nurse program was developed to address the need for educational and clinical support for entry-level nurses in a community hospital setting. A focus group was used to assess the novice nurses’ perception of the program and to synthesize lessons learned. Nursing professional development specialists are advised to access the voice of novice nurse participants to meaningfully evaluate and further develop residency programs.


Integrating Evidence-based Practice into Nursing Education: Partnering for Success


Longo, J., and Moffa, C. (2015g). Integrating Evidence-based Practice into Nursing Education: Partnering for Success. Council of Undergraduate Research Quarterly, 35(4), 47-48.         


For nurses to deliver high-quality and safe care, clinical decision-making must be informed by the best evidence, and this starts with research. All nurses need to be informed regarding the tenets of evidence-based practice (EBP), yet few are educationally prepared. The nursing faculty at Florida Atlantic University recognized a need to enhance the curriculum to include experience translating research and evidence into practice.

A three-course inquiry series was created that included the existing nursing-research course, plus a two-credit evidence-based practice course and a one-credit capstone course. The two-credit course covers the history and the role of evidence-based practice in health care, and models of EBP and quality improvement. During the capstone course students are divided into groups and partnered with a local health-care facility or community agency in order to conduct an evidence-based practice or quality-improvement project tied to the needs of the partners. Potential benefits to the partners include resources such as students’ time and access to the university’s databases, something often lacking at the point of care. The students in turn are exposed to real-world issues and become part of a multidisciplinary team.

To evaluate the students’ perspectives about the capstone project, a focus group was conducted with the first cohort of students in the course. Challenges identified were the time commitment involved and scheduling and coordination with the facilities. Although the students found the partners helpful, insufficient communication within the facilities hampered some activities. The students said they initially did not see the need to learn about evidence-based practice because they were more concerned with learning patient-care skills, but that later they came to appreciate EBP. All the capstone projects contributed in some manner to delivery of care, and some facilities chose to continue their projects with the participation of students in the subsequent student cohort.


Caring for Novice Nurses Applying Swanson’s Theory of Caring   

Moffa, C. (2015). Caring for novice nurses applying Swanson’s theory of caring. International Journal for Human Caring, 19 (1).

While patient needs are the focus of caring in health care facilities, it is imperative to extend caring to staff. This is particularly important for vulnerable staff members such as novice nurses, who are experiencing very challenging times in their careers. The health care environment is complex, filled with many personalities and moving parts.  Novice nurses face several challenges, including getting accustomed to increased clinical responsibilities and fitting-in with other staff members.  This puts them at risk for decreased job satisfaction, burnout and possibly leaving their position or the profession altogether.  Frequently, novice nurse orientation focuses on the acquisition of clinical skills; it serves the facility’s needs, but lacks a caring component that acknowledges the nurse as an individual. Nurse educators in staff development are in a unique position to develop orientations that will support and enhance the experience of novice nurses. The purpose of this paper is to present a model of applying caring to novice nurse orientation using Swanson’s theory of caring. 

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