Document Type


Publication Date


Date of Final Presentation


Committee Chair

Dr. Pamela Gehrke

Committee Member

Dr. Jennifer Palagi

Coordinator/ Chair of DNP Program

Pamela Gehrke, EdD, RN

Abstract/ Executive Summary

Problem Description: Adults in the United States do not exercise sufficiently to meet the specifications outlined in the 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2018). The Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion’s (2018) Healthy People 2020 aims to eliminate health disparities and achieve health equity among all population groups in the United States. However, statistics from the U.S. Office of Minority Health (2014) indicate that Hispanics are twice as likely to be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes as non-Hispanic whites. According to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report in 2015, Hispanics are disproportionately burdened with the complications associated with the disease and are 50% more likely to die from diabetes or liver disease than non-Hispanic whites.

Interventions: Educational information and health promotion measures need to be implemented among the Hispanic population to narrow this identified knowledge gap. Hispanics need to engage in leisure-time physical activity to decrease modifiable risk factors for diabetes, obesity, heart disease, hypertension, and depression (Arredondo et al., 2016). Literature review findings indicate Hispanics are difficult to recruit and retain in studies. They have a high level of trust in information provided by faith-based individuals and are very family-centered (Acevedo et al., 2014). Five educational sessions were conducted over five weeks at two Catholic churches in collaboration with local Faith Community Nurses. The educational information was structured around the Hispanic core value of familism, stressing the importance of health as a responsibility toward the whole family and not just the individual. Each educational session assisted in increasing their knowledge of diabetes, obesity, healthy eating habits, and the health risks of sedentary behaviors.

Results: A total of sixteen (n=16) Hispanic adults attended at least one of the five educational sessions. Nine (56%; n=9) adults completed all five educational sessions, pre-and-post surveys, and tracked their physical activity for five weeks. At the conclusion of the five weeks, one hundred percent (100%; n=9) of the participants met the physical activity guidelines of 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity physical activity as recommended by the 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines (HHS, 2018.) (Appendix DD).

Interpretation: Participants reported a high level of trust in the educational information provided and a sense of safety due to the involvement of the Faith Community Nurses. Participants expressed frustration at the lack of access to health care information presented in easy to understand terms, culturally relevant to their families and with consideration to their safety and need for privacy.

Conclusion: Hispanic adults will adopt leisure-time physical activity when education occurs at their place of worship under the direction of Faith Community Nurses and presented within the framework of the cultural core value of familism.