Purpose/Aims: We aim to increase understanding of water safety measures among primary care providers and improve the quality and efficiency of parent water-safety education.
Background and Significance: Drownings are the leading cause of death in one to four year old children in the United States. Arizona’s drowning rate is nearly double the national average for this age group. Water safety is an important anticipatory guidance topic a primary care provider should be discussing at all well visits. The Health Belief Model is an effective framework to guide family education interventions. It is strongly encouraged that providers incorporate water safety education into the developmental milestone discussions.
Methods: Ten providers recruited from six Arizona pediatric primary care clinics participated in an educational one-hour session. Providers were encouraged to prioritize water safety discussions within the one to four year old age group and deliver education in the context of individual child development. Additionally, providers were updated on water safety recommendations from the Center for Family Health and Safety at Phoenix Children’s Hospital. Supplemental handouts with developmental water safety information were given to each office to aid providers in parent education. A pre-survey was administered to the providers prior to the education session and a post-survey was given at an eight-week follow up. The surveys measured provider perception and current practices of water safety education and utilized a Likert scale to compare data sets. Current and retrospective chart reviews were conducted to evaluate sustainability of the educational intervention.
Outcomes/Results: Sixty percent of provider participants were Medical Doctors (MD) and 40% were Nurse Practitioners (NP) with experience ranging from one year to over 20 years. Following the education session, providers were more likely to discuss keeping a child at arms-reach at all times (p=0.046) during their well visits. There was also an increase in providers incorporating water safety discussions into milestone education (p=0.054).
Conclusion: This educational intervention empowered providers to deliver water safety education in the context of normal developmental milestones at each one to four year old well visit. The anticipatory guidance emphasizes to parents that the behaviors their children exhibit are healthy and normal, but also explains how achieving these milestones put their children at greater risk for drownings. This quality improvement project is part of a larger initiative to decrease the number of drownings in Arizona through education and policy