Date of Award

Fall 2018

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)

Thesis Committee Chairperson

Wencan Lu, FNP

Abstract

Purpose: According to the current literature, inconsistencies exist in alcohol screening. These inconsistencies are especially detrimental to the geriatric population. This population’s advanced age puts it at higher risk of depression, falls, physical injury, confusion, and unwanted medication side-effects. Therefore, adequate alcohol screening is vital. The purpose of this study is to obtain knowledge and understanding from geriatric patients’ perceptions concerning alcohol screenings by their primary care providers.

Method: This is a quantitative, descriptive study, in which participants anonymously answered a 17-question multiple-choice survey entitled, “Perceptions of Alcohol Screening Adequacy in Primary Care (age 65+).” Data were analyzed using SurveyMonkey and SPSS statistics 23 analyzation software. Descriptive statistics, crosstabulations, and Spearman’s Rho correlation were utilized in the interpretation.

Findings: A total of 38 participants completed the survey. The participants’ ages ranged from 65 to 82 years old. Geriatric patients feel they are being adequately screened for alcohol use by their primary care providers, although many screenings are inadequate There is a statistically moderate correlation between comfort levels in discussing alcohol use with the primary care provider and the geriatric patients’ overall perceptions of alcohol screening: r2=0.538, p=0.000. Conclusions: Geriatric patients who feel comfortable discussing alcohol use with their primary care providers felt they were being screened adequately, although screenings were inconsistent, which poses risks to the geriatric primary care patient.

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