3 Obstacles to Higher Education Levels in Nursing
Make sure staff has Internet access on worksite computers so they can conduct professional literature searches. You don't want them checking Facebook when they are supposed to be working, of course, but if you hold staff to a high degree of professionalism, they're not going to do that anyway.
Consider professional development activities that promote evidence-based practice. Don't think that being a small, rural hospital precludes such activities. Look at Barbara "BJ" Hannon, MSN, RN, CPHQ—chosen as one of the 20 people making healthcare better in 2009. She regularly travels to small hospitals around rural Iowa to educate staff on evidence-based practice and how to get started.
Having more nurses educated at a higher level isn't an either/or choice. The choice isn't between having enough nurses to meet demand OR having more highly educated nurses. If nurse leaders get behind the cause, hospitals can have both.
Rebecca Hendren is a senior managing editor at HCPro, Inc. in Danvers, MA. She edits www.StrategiesForNurseManagers.com and manages The Leaders' Lounge blog for nurse managers. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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