Development of an EBP Fellowship for Nursing

Wednesday, 15 July 2009: 1:45 PM

Kelly Jo Cone, RN, MS, PhD, CNE
Saint Francis College of Nursing, Peoria, IL

Learning Objective 1: identify strengths and challenges in developing an EBP fellowship with staff nurses.

Learning Objective 2: describe the administrative process for development of a program to enhance utilization of EBP by staff nurses.


An Evidence-based fellowship was established to enhance the utilization and contributions of research and clinical expertise in the improvement of patient care, safety, and nurse/ patient satisfaction. The purpose of this presentation will be to discuss what the committee has learned through this process and the changes that will be made in the next fellowship position to enhance success and application of EBP to nursing practice.


A variety of criteria were set up for the candidate’s program, such as the successful candidate will receive 4 hours per week off from their regularly scheduled clinical hours to work on their selected project. Candidate Criteria example:

  1. Registered professional nurse (RN) employed at the Medical Center for a minimum of 2 years on the same unit.
  2. The RN will develop a one-page typed proposal related to their EBP project
    1. Selected topic for project and reason why selected (personal experience may be included)
    2. Proposed practice change
    3. Literature to substantiate need for practice change (three references required)
    4. Discussion of how unit staff will be involved in this project
    5. Potential outcomes or improvements to patient care from this practice change

Results: The first EBP fellow was selected and is currently working on a project titled “Standardizing the Treatment of Adult Diabetic Ketoacidosis Patients within the Intermediate Intensive Care Unit”.  The current literature on DKA was reviewed and an standardized order set was developed utilizing input from a multidisciplinary team. The fellow has identified the variables of interest as length of stay, time to close ion gap in hours, and time for CO2 to return to normal and the team supported these conclusions.

Conclusion:Nursing administration is supporting this project and is is planning on having additional fellowships for each zone within the medical center. The impact of the standardized order set on the listed variables is currently being reviewed.