Date of Award

Spring 2018

Degree Type

Open Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)

First Advisor

Dr. Deborah Dumphy


This research study was conducted to compare the treatment patterns of Nurse Practitioners (NPs) and Physicians when treating children, aged 6 months to 12 years, diagnosed with Acute Otitis Media (AOM) based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) guidelines. An anonymous, non-experimental, cross­sectional, 9-item, web-based survey that differentiated information by provider was collected. A total of 39 surveys from NPs and Physicians was received. Findings conclude that providers are not consistently following the CDC and AAP recommendations. Survey analysis show that 35% percent of NPs incorrectly prescribe antibiotics compared to 18.2% of Physicians. Research shows no significance between provider type when prescribing "Watchful Waiting" as a treatment for AOM.

Keywords: acute otitis media, nurse practitioner, physician, antibiotics, watchful waiting, evidence-based guidelines