As the awareness of concussions increases, it is imperative to be able to evaluate, diagnose, and treat concussed individuals properly to prevent further complications or death. The primary purpose of this study was to compare a provider's current awareness and comfort level as it relates to the return-to-play guidelines for concussions. A secondary aim was to evaluate current protocols that are in use and determine whether they coincide with the suggested guidelines. An educational intervention was implemented to assess the knowledge and confidence of health care providers. The study design was a quantitative, convenient sample, pretest/posttest questionnaire. The questionnaire was administered to participants who were nurse practitioners prior to an educational PowerPoint presentation. At 8 weeks, the posttest was administered. Approximately 19% of individuals were not aware of a graded return-to-play protocols. The findings suggest that the educational intervention increased their confidence levels in making a diagnosis of a concussion, in assessing danger signs, and in understanding when to refer to a specialist. Additional supporting evidence from this study indicates that the educational intervention allowed the participants to achieve a greater comfort level in finding appropriate resources for them and their patients.
Department of Health Sciences, Robert Morris University, Moon Township, Pennsylvania (Dr Bires); Heartland Care Partners, Manor Care Health Services, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (Dr Leonard); and Information Management Solutions, Management Science Associates, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (Mr Thurber).
Correspondence: Angela Macci Bires, EdD, MPM, RT(N), CNMT, FSMMI-TS, Department of Health Sciences, Robert Morris University, 6001 University Blvd, Moon Township, PA 15108 (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The authors thank Robert Morris University; Dr Susan Van Cleve; Children's Community Pediatrics–Armstrong; and Pennsylvania Coalition of Nurse Practitioners.
The authors have disclosed that they have no significant relationships with, or financial interest in, any commercial companies pertaining to this article.