Nursing homes have better pain and catheter management if leaders have more credentials, study finds

Share this content:

Nursing homes led by administrators and directors of nursing with higher levels of education and certification have better outcomes on some key quality measures, according to recently published findings.

If the administrator is certified and has a master's or more advanced degree, a nursing home tends to have better pain outcomes, the investigators determined. Nursing homes had better pain management and less catheter use if the DON had certification and at least a bachelor's degree.

More research is needed, particularly because the positive effects were not seen across the board. Increased DON education was associated with higher pressure ulcer rates, the study authors found. The linkage between leader education and resident outcomes needs to be better understood, but their results suggest that increasing the education and certification requirements for administrators and DONs could be a good idea, they wrote.

Prior research has shown that nursing homes with more credentialed leaders tend to have fewer survey deficiencies, the authors noted. They were affiliated with the University of Maryland School of Nursing and the Red Cross College of Nursing at Chung-Ang University in Seoul, South Korea.

The investigators gleaned education and certification information from the National Nursing Home Survey, which involved more than 1,100 facilities. They drew on Nursing Home Compare data for quality outcomes.

Full findings appear in the online version of the International Journal of Nursing Studies.