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In Nursing, Accountability Fosters Quality

Michelle Wilson Berger for HealthLeaders Media, July 31, 2012

In 2011, the hospital called more than 35,000 patients, with second and third attempts made to many patients missed on the initial try. In the first quarter of 2012, the hospital called some 7,800 patients. "It's taking that relationship from a patient caregiver within the hospital walls here and touching patients when they're in their homes," Veneziano says.

Poudre Valley recently implemented two systems, also in an effort to cement a more personal connection with patients. Poduska calls the first system the bedside report. "The oncoming nurse to a new shift and the off-going nurse of that shift go to the patient's bedside and give a report actively involving the patient," she says. The Fort Collins regional medical center also instituted hourly rounding or "rounding with a purpose," as Poduska puts it, to ensure that a patient who needs something never has to wait long for attention. Patients have already started reporting higher satisfaction scores in areas such as involvement in and knowledge of their care plan.

"What we do here is about the patient," says Johnson of Parkview Whitley. "But we also have to have the right kind of work environment. It's about putting all of that together." And, adds Veneziano, it's about being transparent with nurses and translating the metrics into real situations. "All these numbers and dashboards have meaning to actual care and quality of the patients that we care for," she says. "We have made the metrics meaningful."

Michele Wilson Berger is contributing writer for HealthLeaders Media.


This article appears in the July 2012 issue of HealthLeaders magazine.

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