Master of Science in Nursing Evidence-Based Practice Projects

Date Degree Awarded


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Nursing (M.S.N.)



Committee Chair

Chu-Yu Huang, Ph.D., RN

Second Committee Member

Elizabeth Delaney MS, RN, CNS, FNP-BC, OCN, ACHPN

Third Committee Member

Clifford Fawcett M.S.N., M.Ed., RN, CFNP


Prescription Stimulants Abuse (PSA), college students


Prescription stimulants have been identified as one of the most written psychoactive prescription medications found among college students. Likewise, prescription stimulant abuse (PSA) has greatly increased in the college campuses (5.4% in 2003 to 9.3% in 2013). Several factors such as (a) diversion and sharing of prescribed stimulants among families, friends and others; (b) lack of knowledge about the risks associated with prescription stimulants; (c) polysubstance use; (c) academic enhancement; and (d) stress from ineffective coping skills and life events, have been identified as contributing factors to the increase in PSA among college students. Various critical health-related symptoms such as tachycardia, hypertension, hallucinations, loss of concentrations and depression have been identified with PSA. College students with prescription stimulants need to be aware of the associated risks identified with prescription stimulants. In addition, healthcare providers caring for college students who necessitate prescription stimulants need to be familiar with substance abuse prevention efforts to manage PSA. Although, numerous interventions have been implemented to reduce prescription drug abuse in general. However, there is lack of evidence-based recommendations for the management of PSA among college students. Therefore, the purpose of this project was to develop evidenced-based recommendations for healthcare providers to manage PSA among college students.

Recommendations were developed after a comprehensive literature review. Based on the evidences retrieved from the reviewed literature: increase in awareness and education pertaining to prescription stimulant, collaboration approach between healthcare providers, community, family and development of spiritual competence have been suggested for healthcare providers caring for college students with prescription stimulant. In addition, healthcare providers are encouraged to utilize these recommendations as a guiding tool when caring for college students with ADHD or with potential for prescription stimulant abuse.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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