• Development of a Bariatric patient Readiness Assessment Tool (BRAT) for the Emergency Department.

      Jones, Dennis W. (2011)
      The current obesity epidemic in the U.S. and the chronic conditions associated with obesity and morbid obesity, present many challenges to healthcare providers, particularly in the hospital Emergency Department (ED). EDs are often not well equipped to care for the morbidly obese patient, which presents risks to safe patient handling for both patient and provider. The purpose of this study was to develop an assessment tool to determine the readiness of the ED to care for and handle the morbidly obese patient. Currently published guidelines by the Facilities Guidelines Institute (FGI) and the National Association of Bariatric Nurses (NABN) were applied to the development of the tool. The tool assesses policy, equipment, space and structural requirements, and patient handling and moving tasks. A two phase non-experimental, exploratory study in a convenience sample of five EDs was conducted applying a usability testing model to determine the tool's usability and utility. Four of the five hospital EDs agreed the tool was easy to use and helpful in determining their readiness to safely care for the morbidly obese patient. The tool was found to be usable on a limited basis. Additional application of the tool on a larger scale is recommended. [Key words: readiness assessment tool, morbidly obese, Emergency Department]