Doctor of Nursing Practice Program

Esther Ashu, DNP, CNP-BC, PMHNP-BC

Esther Ashu
  • Committee Chair Name & Credentials:
    Terri Allison, DNP, ACNP-BC, FAANP


DNP Project Abstract

Implementation of a PCP-led Weight Loss Project Using Intensive Behavior Therapy

The purpose of this project was to achieve ≥ 5% decrease in initial body weight (IBW) from ≥ 60 % of participants over 12-weeks using bi-weekly intensive behavior therapy (IBT).

Using the PDSA cycle, we implemented 6 bi-weekly face-to face or virtual sessions to participants with BMI > 30. Pre- and post-implementation weight, BMI, BP, A1C, and physical activity index (PAI) were collected. Data collected was analyzed using descriptive statistics and we agreed on the following hypothesis:

  • if > 60% of participants lose > 5% IBW, adopt IBT method.
  • If > 30 % participants lose > 5% IBW, adapt.
  • If no change in weight in > 60 % of participants, abandon.

Of the 22 participants that completed the intervention, 30 % achieved > 5 % decrease in IBW, while 30% attained 2-4 % drop in IBW. Of those with > 5% decrease in IBW, 71 % had a 1-point decrease in their A1C, while 73% of participants reported increase in PAI from < 2000 steps/day to > 10,0000 steps/day. Average systolic BP also decreased in 63 % of participants from 154 to 128.

Implications for Practice
The intervention resulted in significant metabolic gains besides the weight loss. IBT is easily implementable (face-to-face or virtual) and amendable to modern technology. Challenges include small sample size and limited implementation time. Notwithstanding, IBT enables the PCP to use targeted behavior interventions to assist patients lose weight.