Utilization of a Consistent Dog Therapy Program in a Level 1 Pediatric Emergency Department
MetadataShow full item record
Publisher:The Ohio State University
Series/Report no.:The Ohio State University. College of Nursing Doctor of Nursing Practice Final Document Projects
Background: Emergency Departments (ED) are stressful environments that require staff members to constantly critically think and make difficult complex decisions quickly. Recent surveys conducted by unit management in a Level 1 Pediatric ED showed that there is an increase in stress and job dissatisfaction in the pediatric ED setting, indicating the need for an intervention known to reduce levels of staff distress. Ginex et al. (2018) found that animal assisted therapy increased healthcare staff’s compassion satisfaction and decreased burnout as compared to pre-intervention as measured by the Professional Quality of Life Scale. Animal assisted therapy has shown to have multiple other positive effects in various populations including the decrease of stress, reduction of anxiety, and increased compassion (Kline, et al., 2019; Dietz, Davis & Pennings, 2012; Goddard & Gilmer, 2015; Ambrost, et al., 2019; Brown, et al., 2019; Uglow, et al., 2019; Ginex, et al., 2018; Moody, et al., 2002). Objectives: The purpose of this project is to determine how a regular implemented dog therapy program in a Level 1 Trauma Center Children’s Hospital Emergency Department would affect staff attendance. Methods: A therapy dog was scheduled to be available for staff to visit for one hour during shift change times rotating from the late morning, afternoon and early evening twice weekly. There was one dog handler and one therapy dog at each visit. All staff on unit at that time had the option to visit the therapy dogs during the one hour that the dog was on unit. Visit times and length of stay for staff were dependent upon when staff was available. Results: Staff responses were collected via pre- and post-intervention questionnaires. Staff indicated that they were able to visit therapy dogs more often after initiation of the project than before project initiation. Prior to project initiation, 60% of staff indicated that dog therapy was not offered enough, compared to only 37% after the project was complete. Approximately 5% of staff that completed the questionnaires indicated that they did not participate in the dog therapy program both pre-intervention and post-intervention. Conclusions: Staff were able to participate in dog therapy more often in the two months during the project than in the two months preceding the project, meeting the overall goal of providing a regular dog therapy program more easily accessible to staff.
A three-year embargo was granted for this item.
Items in Knowledge Bank are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.