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Interventions in Nursing Practice

Interventions are essential part of nursing practice as they can improve patients’ ratings and outcomes while also helping to save costs. As psychological well-being remains one of the most pressing issues of concern, appropriate interventions can improve specific outcomes. According to the NCQA, over 2,000,000 people are hospitalized with mental illness each year in the United States (“Follow-up after Hospitalization for Mental Illness (FUH),” n.d.).

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In light of this, developing follow-up interventions for patients discharged after hospitalization for mental illness and using appropriate tools to measure the outcomes of these interventions will allow for enhancing patients’ recovery, practice performance, and patient ratings.


Medication Reconciliation

The first intervention encompasses a consultation regarding the medications within forty-eight hours after discharge. This intervention will allow the nurse practitioner to either adjust medications if needed or make sure that the patient is adjusting well. Furthermore, it is a reliable way of ensuring that the patient is taking their medications properly, as the NP provides instructions on how to take them.

In this regard, given that most patients who have been prescribed antidepressants require a long-term commitment, it is crucial to check whether they are taking the medication correctly. The intervention will involve filling out a chart with questions aimed at determining whether the patient is taking the medications, how well they understand the instructions, how they are reacting to the medications, and whether it is necessary to adjust the medications.

Follow-up Calls

Considering that mental illness can reoccur during the lifetime, maintaining one’s well-being is as important as treating the illness. In fact, patients are especially vulnerable during the first days after the discharge, Therefore, follow-up calls during these first days can make a difference. In particular, making a follow-up call will allow the NP to reveal any concerning symptoms or clarify any points the patient may have misunderstood after discharge.

The timeframe for the call should be based on the patient’s level of readmission risk. For instance, patients admitted with a suicide attempt should be among the first to receive a follow-up call. This is because, as noted by Inagaki et al. (2019), many patients admitted for suicidal behavior are likely to make another attempt even after treatment.

In order to evaluate the intervention results effectively, it is vital to determine specific topics that should be discusses with the patient during follow-up calls. Such topics may include the patient’s health status, medicines taken, and personal information. Inquiring about the patient’s health status will allow them to share some symptoms or concerns they may have. Asking about the medicines will help to reveal whether the patient is taking them as well as how they are adjusting to specific medicines.

Finally, inquiring about personal information pertaining to daily routine, family involvement, and relevant stressors will help to build a trustworthy connection between the patient and the NP. The responses to all questions should be recorded and filed in appropriate blanks. It is important to ask each patients the same questions so as to ensure that they can be used for the purposes of further research if needed.

Follow-up Appointments

The third intervention is follow-up appointments during the first seven days after discharge. This should be an integral part of the recovery process since it provides numerous benefits. Firstly, the NP can evaluate the patient’s response to medication and make adjustments if necessary. Secondly, follow-up care contributes to a decrease in readmission rates and helps patients keep track of their progress even after hospitalization. Follow-up appointments should take place twice a month in order to maintain active contact with the patient.

Lastly, the NP can consult the patient regarding any additional therapy and see whether it is required depending on the patient's recovery. After the follow-up appointment, information such as new or concerning symptoms, adjustment to medications, and additional therapy should be filled in an electronically available file prepared in advance.

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Tracking the Results

A reliable way of tracking the effectiveness of the above interventions would be the use of an integrated dashboard. A dashboard is a web-based solution that presents data and key measures in a form convenient for evaluation (“Dashboard Solutions,” n.d.). It is crucial to choose a dashboard with filters that will enable one to find, track, share, and follow up on the information easily. The primary measures of evaluation may include readmission rates, mortality, and patients’ experience rates.

The data collected will be transported to the dashboard where the listed rates will be determined in percentages. As modern dashboards include filters, this can help to evaluate the effectiveness of the interventions regarding particular measures. For instance, it can be revealed that follow-up enhance patients’ experience while having no impact on readmission rates. Hence, dashboards should be easy to use and get the most out of the interventions.

Impact on Patient Outcomes and Cost Savings

The interventions discussed above are expected to bring various benefits to both patients and NPs. The first intervention, medical reconciliation, should have a significant impact on the patient’s recovery. As patients are the most vulnerable during the first days after discharge, it is important to track their progress and ensure that they take medications properly. Given that a patient might not adjust to the medications well, they may arise a need for the NP to intervene.

As a result, a patient has more chances of receiving appropriate care and recovering quickly. Accordingly, the practice stands to benefit due to the avoidance of additional costs associated with readmission. Most importantly, the NP makes informed decisions, which reduces the chances of costly errors; meanwhile, the clinic’s reduced costs can facilitate the establishment of favorable work conditions.

The second intervention, follow-up calls, can make a difference for the patient experience and readmission rates. Inagaki et al. (2019) emphasize the importance of maintaining active contact with and following up on patients over the period of six months after discharge. In light of this, follow-up calls contribute to the patient’s quickest recovery due to the NP’s active engagement with the patient.

Moreover, this increases patients’ satisfaction rate, meaning that patients will be more likely to seek care from the NP again when needed. In fact, patients can share their positive impressions, which can help to gain new patients. In addition, follow-up calls help to clarify any misunderstandings or questions that patients may have, thereby increasing the chances of their successful recovery and decreasing readmission costs. Most importantly, the NP is able to discover gaps in the hospitalization process and address them during treatment, which will make work conditions more advantageous.

The third intervention, follow-up appointments for patients during the first seven days after discharge, is expected to improve patient outcomes as well. This is because patients will be able to share any new symptoms or concerns that they have not shared before. Such check-ups may help the NP make medication changes if needed. Another important part of patients’ recovery usually includes behavioral therapy or group therapy.

Thus, during physical examination, the doctor can investigate any concerning symptoms and prevent readmission, which will help the clinic save on additional expenses. Therefore, follow-up appointments should decrease readmission rates, which will translate to improved patient outcomes and ratings.

Impact on Patient Ratings

Patient ratings are directly connected to patients’ satisfaction with the care received. Consequently, if healthcare professionals dedicate their time and attention to patients even after discharge, this should evidently improve patients’ satisfaction and ratings. For instance, medication reconciliation and follow-up calls will show the patients how the NP cares for them, which will build a positive attitude and opinion, while follow-up appointments with personal questions will further strengthen the positive opinion.

As a result, the NP receives more opportunities for professional growth and can implement reliable care methods, hence the increase in the number of satisfied patients.


The role of interventions in nursing practice must not be underestimated. This is because patients have more chances of recovering faster and maintaining good health for long. Accordingly, the practice stands to benefit from increased revenue due to the increased patient satisfaction and decreased costs.

If the listed interventions are accurately measured and implemented, the quality of care for mentally ill patients will improve significantly, which will benefit the whole medical community as well as patients.

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