Background: Nursing assessment of Stroke patients in order to establish normal or abnormal swallowing reflex has significant impact on patient's recovery. It lowers the risk for complications such as dehydration and aspiration pneumonia. Having empowered bedside nurses can make an impact in patient's recovery through a reliable dysphagia screening tool which leads to better patient outcome and decrease length of stay in the hospital.

Methods: The study focused on Stroke patients. There were coordination meetings conducted with the hospital Speech Language Pathologist, our Unit Clinical Nurse Specialist and Nurse Research Scientist. The meetings served to plan and receive feedback on improving this process. The group agreed it was most appropriate to review medical records focusing on initial Dysphagia Screen upon admission to the hospital and to Neuroscience Unit. It also included evaluation of nurses’ familiarity with Dysphagia Screening Tool through gathering of their responses with actual interview questions.

Results: Based on questionnaire distributed, it is evident that most nurses are aware of the initial dysphagia screening tool initiated in Emergency Room. However, nurses are unable to initiate bedside swallow evaluation once they are admitted to Neuroscience unit, Factors associated with it are lack of awareness and education on how their nursing assessment will impact the plan of care. It was also identified that there's a need for education of nurses, on how assessment of patient's ability to swallow can overcome dissatisfaction, reduce complication and shorten length of stay.

Conclusion: It is essential to establish a standardized Nursing Assessment tool that bedside nurses can easily administer and use in Neuroscience unit. It must be reliable and coordinated with Speech Language Pathology. Furthermore, it requires appropriate documentation that ensures intervention will occur to prevent delay of care.

Publication Date


Presented At:

11th Annual BHSF Research Conference

Content Type


Baptist Health South Florida Affiliations:

Honoree Ceballos, BSN-RN,MBA,CNRN

Open Access

Available to all.