Paper Type

Doctoral Project


Brooks College of Health

Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)



NACO controlled Corporate Body

University of North Florida. School of Nursing

First Advisor

Dr. Gerard Hogan

Second Advisor

Dr. Patrick Monaghan

Third Advisor

Dr. John McDonough

Department Chair

Dr. Lillia Loriz

College Dean

Dr. Pamela Chally


Background: Beta blockers are recommended by the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association Guidelines for high and intermediate-risk cardiac patients undergoing non-cardiac surgery. Beta blockers are a class of drugs that moderate the effects of increased catecholamine levels on the heart by selectively blocking beta receptors in the heart and blood vessels, resulting in a lower heart rate and blood pressure. Beta blocker use perioperatively has been shown to reduce the risk of ischemia and infarction.

Purpose: The purpose of this project is to address beta blocker use in a group of anesthesia providers who routinely attend to high-risk and intermediate-risk cardiac patients undergoing non-cardiac surgery in a medium-sized private hospital in suburban South Florida. There are barriers to the implementation of the published guidelines for beta blocker administration, including lack of awareness of the best current practice and a lack of a formal beta blocker protocol at the institutional level.

Methods: A simple and inexpensive beta blocker protocol was implemented and evaluated by various means. Beta blocker administration practices were examined and documented prior to and after protocol implementation. Beta blocker usage was examined prior to and after protocol implementation

Findings/Implications: It was hypothesized that increased anesthesia provider awareness would lead to increased administration of perioperative beta blockers to high-risk and intermediate-risk cardiac patients undergoing non-cardiac procedures. Although there was a knowledge increase related to the new beta blocker protocol, no change in practice was observed.