When Mark Gabot, DNP, CRNA, RN decided he wanted to pursue his Doctor of Nursing he was looking for a DNP program that fit five criteria: A Carnegie "R1" research university; a well-established hybrid program; in California or the surrounding states; thoughtful and engaging faculty; and a university with a NCAA D1 basketball program. With the goal of adding value to his organization through self-development as a CRNA leader, Mark set out to pursue his DNP through the Orvis School of Nursing.
“It is incumbent upon CRNAs and other Advanced Practice Registered Nurses to acquire the requisite knowledge necessary to practice within the context of an increasingly complex healthcare delivery system. The DNP will help you to be the change you want to see in healthcare,” explained Mark.
Taking advantage of opportunities during the DNP program
During his time in the DNP program, Mark wanted to do more than simply complete his coursework. He set out to have an impactful experience and when he graduated in the summer of 2021, he had a long list of accomplishments including a podium presentation, article acceptance, and committee offerings.
To start, every student must complete a DNP scholarly project. Mark chose to focus his project on the Implementation of a SAFE OB Handover for CRNAs.
“The United States has the greatest maternal mortality ratio (maternal deaths per 100,000 live births) of all high-resource countries. Many of these deaths could have been prevented by addressing systematic errors that contribute to poor maternal outcomes, such as ineffective communication between anesthesia providers,” explained Mark.
“Incomplete or miscommunication has been identified in 72% of sentinel events resulting in perinatal death or permanent disability. The SAFE Handover Tool is a standardized mnemonic: sick patients, at-risk patients, follow-ups, and epidurals. Its use during handover significantly increases the percentage of relevant parturient that are discussed and improves quality communication. I identified a knowledge gap in my CRNA group and my DNP scholarly project sought to fill this gap”
The project examined the effects of using the SAFE Handover, a standardized mnemonic, on obstetrical handover quality among a sample of 15 CRNAs. When compared to the current handover, the SAFE Handover was more effective in transferring important information, comprehensive, and appropriate. Descriptive analysis and paired-samples t-tests showed large, statistically significant improvements with use of the SAFE Handover. The SAFE Handover was described as useful, identified anesthetically relevant patients, increased communication among CRNAs, improved the handover process, and promoted situational awareness. The SAFE Handover is a novel, low-cost, sustainable method to improve CRNA handovers, communication, and patient safety.
Mark then had the opportunity to present his scholarly project and disseminate findings to peers at the American Association of Nurse Anesthesiology (AANA) Annual Congress. The Congress provides educational topics that seek to maximize the effectiveness of CRNAs as healthcare providers. It is attended by over 2,500 CRNAs.
Mark went on to use his passion for research and scholarly findings to make an impact in the healthcare community.
He participated in the Sigma International Research Congress which allowed him to connect with global nursing leaders who are equally as passionate about evidence-based research as he was. He was able to give back to his alma mater through the Azusa Pacific University Research Symposium where he presented his research, and he submitted a storyboard of his DNP scholarly project to the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) Forum which focuses on improvement science, safety, and quality to improve the health of individuals and populations.
Graduating with opportunities
Mark was met with a variety of opportunities immediately upon graduation. After graduation he was appointed to editorial manuscript reviewer for the AANA Journal, poster reviewer for the AANA Foundation Research and Quality Division, and mentor in the AANA Foundation Doctoral Mentorship Program. He is also Clinical Coordinator and Clinical Co-investigator for DNP scholarly projects through the Kaiser Permanente School of Anesthesia/CSU DNP Consortium Program.
For Mark, the DNP program at Orvis School of Nursing forever changed the clarity of lens and widened the aperture through which he saw healthcare.
"To my parents, Ernesto and Rosalia Gabot thank you for giving me the wings to fly. To my wife, Naomi thank you for giving me the vision to see past the clouds. To my sons, Brandon and Kyle thank you for being the sunshine that lights my way. To my brother, Ryan thank you for showing me the direction to follow. To my mentors, Dr. Hintz and Dr. DeBoor thank you for believing in me. In His name, we made it."
The University of Nevada, Reno offers both a Post-Master's DNP and a BSN to DNP program. The post-master's program offers two specialty tracks and the BSN to DNP offers three. Learn more about the DNP program on the Orvis School of Nursing website.