Date of Award


Degree Name

Nursing (D.N.P.)


College of Nursing

First Advisor

Dianne Conrad, DNP, RN, FNP-BC, BC-ADM, FNAP

Second Advisor

Iris Boettcher, MD, CMD,

Third Advisor

Rebecca Davis, PhD, RN, MSN


Dementia is a major public health concern that is both debilitating and deleterious to those afflicted with its various forms. The number of those living with dementia is increasing exponentially as the population continues to rise, with 46.8 million people worldwide currently afflicted with dementia (Chow et al., 2018). Dementia causes cognitive impairment that is severe enough to affect everyday function (Chow et al., 2018). The impairment and disability resulting from dementia indicates a significant health problem in primary care. Findings from research studies indicate that prophylactic and periodic screening for dementia can heighten provider suspicion and translate into earlier establishment of interventions to improve patient outcomes (Chow et al., 2018). The purpose of this project was to promote consistent implementation of an evidence based screening protocol to increase the timeliness of assessment and accuracy of dementia diagnoses in a home-based primary care setting. Based on a review of the literature, a protocol was designed and conducted to guide consistent and early dementia diagnoses. Outcome evaluation was based on pre- and post- data regarding the number of screenings administered, diagnoses given, and follow-up care initiated. Results included an increased understanding of administration of the MoCA, standardization of techniques for administration, and an increased number of appropriate dementia diagnoses made by providers within the practice. The project showed that improving health care provider’s knowledge about prophylactic dementia screening increases their likelihood to diagnose dementia, initiate appropriate care planning, and make referrals that will improve patient’s mental health, and improve patient outcomes.