Date of Award

Spring 5-5-2023

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)

First Advisor

Gail Godwin, Ph.D., PMHNP-BC, CNE

Second Advisor

Josie Doss, Ph.D., MSN, RNC-OB, SANE-A

Third Advisor

Brenda Kirkland, MSN, RN


Postpartum depression (PPD) is a type of depression that has occurred in women during pregnancy or after the delivery of a child. In the United States, approximately 13.2% of postpartum women were diagnosed with postpartum depression. Research indicated that early identification of PPD led to the best outcomes for postpartum mothers. Routine postpartum depression education and screening for postpartum depression did not exist in the perinatal unit at a Southeast Georgia rural hospital. Lack of nursing knowledge and skill were two barriers identified to screening patients for PPD and providing discharge education. The study provided an educational intervention to provide nursing staff with education on postpartum depression and appropriate screening practices for perinatal nursing staff to increase knowledge, attitude, and skill to improve routine screening, discharge education, and early identification of PPD. The study used a pretest and post-test survey to evaluate baseline knowledge and skill compared to post-educational intervention evaluation. During the four-week study timeline, the nursing staff screened postpartum patients for PPD using the Edinburgh Postnatal Screening tool. The PPD screening rate data was compared to pre-project data using a retrospective chart review. There were 16 nursing staff that completed the project. A dependent samples t-test was used to test if an educational intervention affected nursing staff knowledge of PPD and appropriate screening practices. The data indicated a statistically significant increase in knowledge of PPD (M 18.25, SD 1.39), t (15) = 2.34, p = .03) and appropriate screening practices (M 2.44, SD 1.21), t (15) = 2.61, p = .02). The study data also supported a 100 percent increase in discharge education on PPD provided to patients. The results of this study supported the previous limited study's positive impact of an educational intervention to improve nursing staff knowledge of postpartum depression.

Included in

Nursing Commons