Document Type

Final Project

Graduation Date


Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice

First Advisor

Elizabeth Mollard


Objective: The objective of this project was to implement an obstetric triage acuity scale in a labor and delivery setting and study the effect on nurse knowledge and timeliness of care.

Design: A quasi-experimental pre and post-test design was used for this pilot project.

Setting: This project was conducted in an obstetric triage unit located within a fourteen-bed labor and delivery unit in the Midwest.

Methods: This pilot project was conducted over a two-month time period. Fifteen registered nurses qualified to care for obstetric triage patients were given education on the chosen triage acuity scale. A pre-test was administered before the education was received. Pre-implementation timeliness of care was calculated over a one-month time period by calculating the time of patient arrival to the first vital sign taken. Over the one-month pilot period, timeliness of care was also calculated. At the completion of the one-month pilot, a post-test was given to the pilot participants to assess knowledge.

Results:For the knowledge component, the pre-test average test score was 50.58%, and the post-test average test score was 61.63% (p=.55). Timeliness of care improved from an average of 20.4 minutes to 5.2 minutes from arrival to first vital sign (p

Conclusion: Obstetric triage is a critical part of the care pregnant patients receive, and the use of obstetric triage acuity scales can improve patient outcomes. Data from this project shows that using an obstetric triage acuity scale helped reduce the time from patient arrival to first vital sign taken, improving the timeliness of care. Nurse knowledge was increased, although not at a statistically significant level.

Recommendation: Based on the results of this project, full implementation of the use of an obstetric triage acuity scale on this Labor and Delivery unit is recommended. If full implementation takes place, it would be recommended to re-educate all staff, including those that participated in the pilot to ensure competency and knowledge on the topic is up to date. It would also be beneficial to collect data on implementation with all of the staff on the unit rather than just a small pilot sample.