History Part 1: Building a Health History: Asking Difficult Questions

Much of an archeologist’s work is done under the mantra “proceed with caution.” Archeologists must dutifully secure permissions to access sites. They also must exercise extreme caution when excavating or analyzing in a lab to avoid potential damage to historical artifacts.

Likewise, nurse practitioners must proceed with caution when building a patient’s health history. Important questions can be difficult for both nurse and patient. Care must be taken to approach such questions with dignity, tact, and respect to create an environment conducive to productive conversations. 

This Assignment is composed of 2 parts. Part 1 will include a written script for building a health history where you incorporate those difficult questions with a written reflection for your submission. Part 2 will include a written assessment of the use of screening apps. Both parts will be due at the end of Week 2, the final week of this module.

For Part 1 of this Assignment, you will develop a script to be used to interview a volunteer serving in the role of patient.

To prepare:

  • Review the Ewing (2004) questionnaire found in this week’s Learning Resources and consider the difficult questions you might have to ask when you take a patient’s health history.
  • Review the screening tools found in the Learning Resources and consider how you might use an app or tool to assist in screening.
  • Review the media programs related to a vaginal exam, pap test, and breast exam.
  • Review the health history guide presented in Chapter 6 of the Schuiling & Likis (2017) text and consider how you would create your own script for building a health history. (Note: You will also find the Health History Form in Chapter 6)
  • Create your own script for building a health history and use the Health History Template for guidance (consider the type of language you would use to help your patient be more comfortable). As you create your script, consider the next bullet point and the difficult questions you want to include in your script.
  • As you work with your patient, include those questions that you would have difficulty asking (number of sexual partners, sexual activity, types of sexual partners, recreational drug use, alcohol use, gender affiliation, age of first intercourse, STD history, reproductive history of pregnancy terminations, etc.)

Assignment Part 1: (1- to 2-page reflection)

  • Ensure that you have appropriate lighting to record yourself collecting the patient’s health history.
  • (PRETEND) that you are interviewing a patient using your script. (no more than 15 minutes) taking a health history and using the script that you created that includes the difficult questions to ask.
  • In addition to your script for building a health history for this assignment, include a separate section called “Reflection” that includes the following:
  • Explain how you incorporated the use of an app within your health history.


Reminder: The College of Nursing requires that all papers submitted include a title page