The primary focus of this DNP project is the implementation of a mindfulness meditation program for nurses. The underlying reason that encouraged the project’s idea is that a nursing occupation is mentally and physically difficult, defined by several critical responsibilities and duties. On the one hand, nurse practitioners have to work in teams and share their obligations regarding their positions, areas of care, and background knowledge. On the other hand, nurses provide care for the patients and communicate with their families and doctors. In given circumstances, stress, anxiety, and depression can hardly be eradicated; however, according to Van der Riet et al. (2018), emotional regulations help improve psychological well-being. Therefore, this EBP change is considered a protective strategy for nurses to contribute to the promotion of high-quality care and support either for nurses (as direct participants) or patients (as indirect observers).
Rationale for Intervention
As well as other medical employees, nurses have to demonstrate a sufficient set of skills and professional experience required for adequate healthcare delivery under challenging conditions. They are expected to function at their “highest mental and physical level,” and their health is perceived as important as one of their patients (Penque, 2019, p. 39). As such, the development of mindfulness meditation programs is crucial for reducing the risks of job burnout, turnover, and other related problems that could provoke unwanted outcomes in nursing practice. In many countries, mindfulness meditation is already successfully implemented with significant results, including “stress reduction, emotional stability, and focus on work” (Van der Riet et al., 2018, p. 202). Despite the work conditions under which nurses can meditate, the impact of this intervention is proven to be positive (Sanko et al., 2016). Therefore, it was decided to investigate the same technique for nurses who work with a particular group of high morbidity/mortality patients during the pandemic.
Strategies of Project Intervention
In this proposed DNP project, the idea of the intervention implies a team of nurses provided with discipline about the importance of emotional stability in their personal and professional lives. As soon as the instructor explains the key elements of the procedure and its purposes, nurses are invited to engage in several physical activities. The initial plan encompasses spending about two hours per training and three times per week. The first 30 minutes will be devoted to sitting activities when the instructor promotes awareness mindfulness. The next 30 minutes are dedicated to the set of physical exercises that include healthy breathing and fresh-air walking. In addition, another 30 minutes will be given for mindful stretching, both active (shoulder rolls or overhead reach) and passive (warming up activities and simple exercises). The final 30 minutes are used to complete the simple watching when nurses sit still, think about their lives, and relax. With that said, the ultimate goal of the discussed activities is to underline the necessity to focus on the present moment and let the mind open its boundaries.
The appropriate implementation of such significant programs for healthcare providers requires one to address the specific context while continually evaluating the needs and interests of multiple stakeholders. The target stakeholders for planning the mindfulness program in healthcare settings include hospital administrators, medical personnel (nurses in particular), current and potential employees, and the affected public, such as patients and their families. Moreover, potential meditation instructors serve as crucial stakeholders that need to be considered when developing mindfulness programs. Healthcare facilities are the external stakeholders where nurse practitioners perform nursing care.
One should also remember that not all nurses involved in this project are eager to spend time doing all these mindfulness practices because of the already established duties and expectations. Some patients may need additional attention, and some families want to receive high-quality care for a long period. Therefore, it is crucial to plan each meditation session concerning all the participants, patients, their patients, and work plans.
Resources Needed and Potential Costs
The resources available in clinical settings are essential for the successful regulation of stressful medical environments for nurses. The main idea of the proposed intervention is to change human relationships within a particular context, and high mortality ratings are not always easy to predict or prevent. Nurses must have access to the meditation practice, mandalas to paint, and links for mindfulness meditation mobile applications. The program should include the self-managing data collection tools to measure the program outcomes, such as the brief Freiburg mindfulness inventory, self-compassion and serenity scale, interpersonal reactivity index, and indicator of work satisfaction. Regarding the costs analysis, the benefit of the mindfulness meditation strategies should be assessed by the number of nurses involved in this project, as well as the mentioned resources expenses.
To sum up, meditation serves as a means for developing mindfulness and removing all judgments that are related to work, even if only for a moment (Van der Riet et al., 2018). In addition to the possibility to decrease stress and anxiety, this tool is effective for enhancing decision-making, problem-solving, and communication skills (Sanko et al., 2016). A person’s illness may develop in a variety of forms and lead to different outcomes. For this reason, the proposed mindfulness program aims not at understanding the health of patients but at promoting the nurses’ well-being under the period of a pandemic and, thus, providing the best quality care.
Penque, S. (2019). Mindfulness to promote nursesʼ well-being. Nursing Management (Springhouse), 50(5), 38–44.
Sanko, Jill & Mckay, Mary & Rogers, Scott. (2016). Exploring the impact of mindfulness meditation training in pre-licensure and post graduate nurses. Nurse Education Today. 45.
Van der Riet, P., Levett-Jones, T., & Aquino-Russell, C. (2018). The effectiveness of mindfulness meditation for nurses and nursing students: An integrated literature review. Nurse Education Today, 65, 201–211.