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Depression Research and Treatment
Volume 2014, Article ID 257658, 7 pages
Research Article

The Effect of Educational Intervention on Nurses’ Attitudes and Beliefs about Depression in Heart Failure Patients

University of Texas Medical Branch School of Nursing, 301 University Boulevard, Galveston, TX 77555-1029, USA

Received 3 September 2014; Revised 4 November 2014; Accepted 5 November 2014; Published 26 November 2014

Academic Editor: Frans G. Zitman

Copyright © 2014 Patricia Lea. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Systematic depression screening is feasible, efficient, and well accepted; however the lack of consistent assessment in heart failure inpatients suggests barriers preventing its effective diagnosis and treatment. This pilot study assessed the impact of an educational intervention on nurses’ beliefs about depression and their likelihood of routinely screening heart failure patients. Registered nurses from adult medical-surgical units were surveyed before and after an educational intervention to assess their beliefs about depression prevalence and screening in heart failure patients. There was no significant influence on nurses’ beliefs about depression, but the results suggested an increased likelihood that nurses would routinely screen for depression. The moderately significant correlation between beliefs and intent to screen for depression indicates that educational intervention could ultimately have a positive influence on patient outcomes through early detection and treatment of depression in patients with cardiovascular disease; however the observed increase in the intent to screen without a corresponding change in beliefs indicates other influences affecting nurses’ intent to screen heart failure patients for depression.