Date of this Version


Document Type

DNP Project




Nearly 1 in 5 Americans have some form of mental illness, with 1 in 20 experiencing a serious mental illness (SMI) in 2020. Thirty seven percent of adults incarcerated in state and federal prisons have a diagnosed SMI, and 20.8% of people experiencing homelessness in the United States (US) have a SMI. Costs related to mental health treatment and services in the U.S. reached $225 billion in 2019, an increase of 52% since 2009. The purpose of this quality improvement project was to enhance knowledge awareness among healthcare providers, regarding coping skills in individuals with SMI at a behavioral health hospital in Miami, Florida. A descriptive, cross-sectional, pre- and posttest design was employed to conduct this project. Convenience sampling technique was utilized to recruit N = 12 participants and access data at a large hospital in Miami, Florida. The project, including the educational intervention, was conducted remotely and participants completed demographic, pre-, and posttest surveys using Qualtrics and the modified Holahan and Moo’s Coping Strategies Scale (HMCSS) to assess their knowledge of awareness of coping skills in individuals with SMI. Results revealed a significant difference between pre- and posttest results, with an overall increase in knowledge awareness among healthcare providers after an educational intervention, t (11) = 3.4719, p = 0.001, (p < 0.05). Healthcare providers should receive training in this area to increase coping skill utilization and improve health outcomes in individuals with SMI.

Keywords: nursing research, coping skills, serious mental illness, knowledge awareness, health outcomes