Date of Award

Fall 2020

Degree Type

Dissertation/Thesis

Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)

School

Leadership and Advanced Nursing Practice

Committee Chair

Dr. Michong Rayborn

Committee Member 2

Dr. Nina Mclain

Abstract

Student registered nurse anesthetists (SRNAs) are educated in nurse anesthesia programs so they can one day become certified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs). Through the training program, SRNAs work in the anesthesia setting to apply what they learn from the classroom setting. Chipas and Mckenna (2011) found that SRNAs are more stressed than CRNAs. Melius (2012) looked at math anxiety and found a correlation between high math anxiety and poor math performance in nurses. Stress and math anxiety can cause poor math performance (Caviola, Carey, Mammarella, & Szucs, 2017). In the anesthesia clinical setting, stress and math anxiety may cause negative consequences for patients in the form of the wrong dose of medication being administered. This doctoral project created an automated medical calculation spreadsheet on Microsoft Excel. The spreadsheet is called E-Calcutron. E-Calcutron was created to aid SRNAs in calculating weight-based anesthesia medications and to improve patient safety. The investigator gave a presentation on stress, math anxiety, and E-Calcutron to SRNAs enrolled in a nurse anesthesia program in Mississippi. A pre and post-education questionnaire was utilized to gain feedback from SRNAs who participated in the study. The findings were that a majority of SRNAs sampled experienced math anxiety, and a majority of the SRNAs were experiencing stress in the clinical setting. Other findings were that the majority of SRNAs sampled indicated that E-Calcutron could help decrease medical calculation errors, stress levels, and math anxiety; and that the program should be integrated into the anesthesia clinical so SRNAs could use the program. E-Calcutron has the potential to increase patient safety by potentially decreasing dosage errors among SRNAs.

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