Effectiveness of a Suicide Prevention Gatekeeper Training Program With First Year Nurse Anesthesia Residents

Saturday, 21 July 2018

Lavonne M. Adams, PhD, RN, CCRN
Harris College of Nursing & Health Sciences, Texas Christian University, Fort Worth, TX, USA
Monica Jenschke, PhD, CRNA
School of Nurse Anesthesia, Texas Christian University, Fort Worth, TX, USA
Trung Nguyen, MA
Texas Christian University, Fort Worth, TX, USA


The purpose of the study was to determine if QPR (Question, Persuade, Refer) gatekeeper training for nurse anesthesia residents can improve self-reported knowledge, competency, and self-efficacy to intervene with suicidal individuals.


In 2016, an IRB-approved research study was undertaken to gather follow up assessment data related to QPR gatekeeper training and participants’ knowledge, competency, and self-efficacy toward suicide prevention. All first year (3rd semester) nurse anesthesia residents (n=64) who completed QPR gatekeeper training in August 2016 were invited to participate in the study consisting of a pre-training survey, an immediate post-training survey, and a follow up post-training survey given at six-month and nine-month intervals. All surveys were accessed through a link to an online survey via Qualtrics. The QPR Pre-training Survey and QPR Post-training Surveys were adapted with permission from similar gatekeeper evaluation studies frequently cited in the literature (Tompkins & Witt, 2010; Wyman et al., 2008). Preliminary data analysis has been completed using descriptive statistics. Data files are being merged to allow case-by-case analysis with the Friedman test through SPSS.


Of the 64 nurse anesthesia residents receiving QPR gatekeeper training in August 2016, 34 (53.1%) completed the pre-training survey, 53 (82.8%) completed the immediate post-training survey, 37 (57.8%) completed the six-month follow up survey, and 33 (51.6%) completed the nine-month follow up survey.

Improvements in mean aggregate scores of statements related to knowledge, competency, and self-efficacy toward suicide prevention occurred following QPR training. The greatest improvement occurred between the pre-training survey and the immediate post-training survey, with exception of “intervene,” which had highest mean aggregate scores at nine months. Mean aggregate scores declined from the immediate post-training survey to the six-month and nine-month follow up surveys, although responses never returned to pre-training survey levels, and few responses to the follow up surveys suggested that participants strongly disagreed or disagreed that they had knowledge, competency, or self-efficacy to intervene with a suicidal person.


Preliminary data analysis suggests that QPR gatekeeper training results in improvements of knowledge, competency, and self-efficacy toward suicide prevention, with a decay of the improvement over time. Our findings support educating residents in QPR gatekeeper training.