Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



School of Nursing


Not Listed

Committee Chair

Kari Sand-Jecklin.


Background and significance. Over half of all hospitalized patients are treated with antibiotics and antibiotic use is rising. There has been a 500% increase in antibiotic associated diarrhea, a common side effect of antibiotic use, in the last decade. Probiotics are a safe and cost effective measure to prevent or reduce antibiotic associated diarrhea.;Problem statement. The majority of patients admitted to the medical intensive care unit receive antibiotic therapy; however, few are prescribed probiotic therapy concurrent with antibiotics.;Project design. Education was provided to health care providers regarding antibiotic associated diarrhea and the benefits of probiotic use. A guideline was developed to assist health care providers in ordering probiotics.;Evaluation plan. Health care providers' knowledge, attitude, and beliefs, pre and post education intervention were evaluated. Probiotic prescribing rates were tracked pre and post intervention.;Results. There was a statistically significant increase in knowledge and a significant change in attitude after the education intervention. There was also a 2 fold increase in prescribing rates; however a very small number of probiotics were prescribed.;Recommendations. Attempt this practice change on a unit with a more stable staff and a non ICU population. Potentially use yogurt instead of a probiotic tablet in the practice guideline. Also, soliciting change champions may promote probiotic use. Using a flag in the medication ordering system to remind providers to order a probiotic or yogurt concurrently with antibiotic therapy may also increase probiotic prescription rates. Additional research at the institution is recommended to demonstrate the effectiveness of probiotics.