Date of this Version


Document Type

DNP Project


Background: The number of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) among older adults (those 65 years and older) are increasing at a significant pace. Despite this healthcare providers face consistent challenges in initiating sexual health discussions and STI screening in this population.

Objectives: The primary objective of this quality improvement project was to increase provider knowledge of sexual health and STI screening in older adults. Increases in knowledge should translate into changes in practice, resulting in better patient care.

Methodology: This quality improvement project utilized a before/after design. Providers recruited from a primary care clinic had their knowledge of the topic assessed before and after an educational intervention. Knowledge test scores were compared before and following education to determine if provider knowledge increased.

Results: A total of n = 10 providers from a primary care practice operating in South Florida with an average age of 39.4 years (SD 4.43) agreed to participate in the project. Mean knowledge scores increased from 9.85 (SD 5.48) at baseline to 19.62 post-intervention. A Mann-Whitney U-test to compare the scores indicated the following z = - 3.691, p < 0.001, suggesting that the change was statistically significant.

Conclusions: For primary care providers working with older adults in the community, provider education does increase knowledge of sexual health and STI screening in older adults.

Implications: Increases in provider knowledge should translate into the ability of providers to change practice, leading to increased STI and sexual health screening for older adults. This should improve individual and population health over the long term.