Hidden in Plain Sight, Assessing Healthcare Provider Confidence in Identifying Human Trafficking in Their Patient Populations
Date of Award
Doctor of Nursing (ND)
Dr. Sueanne Davidson
Healthcare providers unknowingly interact with patients involved in human trafficking. A literature review supports the presence of trafficked persons in the United States, the prevalence of their use of the healthcare system, and the lack of human trafficking knowledge among healthcare providers. A combination of high-risk behaviors, physical injuries, and mental offenses associated with human trafficking causes injuries, as well as mental and physical healthcare needs. Healthcare professionals are in a unique position to identify, intervene, and support the complex mental and physical healthcare needs of trafficked persons. However, this population of patients remains unrecognized by healthcare professionals. This practice improvement project investigated healthcare provider confidence in identifying human trafficking among their patients and their knowledge of resources available to them. The researcher used a quasi-experimental, pretest-posttest design. Fourteen (n=14) research participants in northeast Mississippi were given a pretest, a web-based educational session, and a posttest one month after the education. A paired samples t-test was used to statistically analyze the paired pretest and posttest results. The data analysis revealed a statistically significant increase in confidence in identifying common risk factors ( p <. 001), physical exam findings 5 consistently found in human trafficking survivors (p < .001), and an increase in available resources to them (p < .001). Given the significant results from the data analysis, the research project answered the clinical question and supported the use of a short, web-based educational intervention to increase knowledge and confidence of healthcare providers in identifying trafficked persons.
Hopple, Renea, "Hidden in Plain Sight, Assessing Healthcare Provider Confidence in Identifying Human Trafficking in Their Patient Populations" (2023). DNP Projects. 14.