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Supported Nurses Boost the Health of Healthcare

Alexandra Wilson Pecci, for HealthLeaders Media, September 4, 2012

But free stuff isn't the only reason that Google employees are productive and engaged. In fact, in an article titled "Passion, Not Perks," Laszlo Bock, Google's senior vice president of people operations, wrote that "the bulk of what we do to cultivate this creative, passionate workforce costs nothing." Bock says that Google operates on three pillars: mission, transparency, and voice. It's a bottom-up approach that translates into every employee, no matter how junior, being listened to, having a say in big decisions, and having access to high-level information about the company and its operations.

"People look for meaning in their work. People want to know what's happening in their environment. People want to have some ability to shape that environment," Bock writes. "These three components of our culture create a virtuous cycle of attraction, community, engagement, and innovation."

These principles of that "virtuous cycle" can be applied to the culture of nursing, too, the new research shows. The recent study, "Nurses' Practice Environments, Error Interception Practices, and Inpatient Medication Errors," published in the Journal of Nursing Scholarship, finds that "when supported by their practice environments, nurses employ practices that can assist in interrupting medication errors before they reach the patients."

A supportive practice environment was positively associated with error interception practices, and interception practices were, in turn, associated with lower medication error rates. A virtuous cycle if there ever was one. More frequent engagement by nurses in interception practices was associated with fewer documented medication errors per 1,000 patient days. For example, for 100 units of interception practice for 1,000 patient days, medication errors decreased by an average of 19.

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1 comments on "Supported Nurses Boost the Health of Healthcare"


sdaniels (9/10/2012 at 10:25 AM)
Google doesn't have to deal with a dual governance system or with an ingrained culture that is slanted heavily in favor of a medical staff for fear of cutting off volume. Perhaps when execs and Boards acknowledge that value is what will sell over the next decade, will we see real - I mean -real change.