Date of Award


Degree Type

Evidence-Based Project Report

Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)



First Advisor

Julie M. Brandy


Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of mortality and morbidity in the United States. Some risk factors for cardiovascular disease can be modified which include: diet; physical activity; smoking; hypertension; diabetes; and weight. Various national programs, such as “Go Red for Women” and “Let’s Move,” have been implemented to address this growing epidemic. Community programs are needed as an adjunct to these national initiatives. Thus, a parish based cardiovascular disease educational program would provide for a unique socially and spiritually supportive environment for education at the community level. Research findings indicate that parish based educational programs are effective in increasing health knowledge of participants. The Health Belief Model and the IOWA model served as frameworks to support implementation of this Evidence Based Practice (EBP) project. The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute’s “Ten Commandments for a Healthy Heart,” was utilized as the 20 minute educational platform. A convenience sample of 20 parishioners from a Midwestern, Roman Catholic Church was obtained to assess knowledge gained from the 20 minute heart healthy education session. A cardiovascular disease knowledge questionnaire evaluated baseline and post education intervention knowledge. Resulting data were analyzed using descriptive statistics and a paired t-test to compare baseline and post education intervention knowledge scores. Results indicated a statistically significant improvement between baseline and post education intervention test scores (p<.000). The findings of this EBP project support implementing parish based educational programs. The Advanced Practice Nurse, as a healthcare professional, can replicate this EBP project to provide education at the community level.