Nobl Insights

Leading Caring Nurses with Powerful Influence

A lot has changed in the past 5 years. Pumpkin Spice Lattes have become a staple of autumn, Siri has become the friend we talk to most, IVs and other instruments have become computerized, and the requirements of nursing have increased dramatically—requiring your nurses to be equipped with higher levels of responsibility, accountability, and knowledge.

Where a culture of accountability exists, people do what they say they’ll do. Everyone builds credibility for himself or herself and for the organization by holding themselves and each other accountable.

It’s important for nurse leaders to establish an environment of learning and betterment. Your unit can foster this culture by focusing on 3 key areas of growth:

Provide Direction

As the saying goes, “Nurses are born, not made.” A true statement in the sense that nurses must have the capacity to care, but significant research supports the idea that individuals can always be directed, managed and taught to care more effectively. If the goal is for nurses to provide better care, we need to invest time into giving proper direction, while continuing to educate ourselves with strategies that accomplish this goal.

Build Culture

To build a great culture, it’s essential for nurse leaders to set an example by modeling what a strong nurse looks like. Leaders need to manifest a philosophy of clinical care emphasizing quality, safety, interdisciplinary collaboration, continuity of care, and professional accountability.

Great leaders also listen, retain, and act according to their nursing staff’s feedback. They provide meaningful input into policy development and operational management issues related to clinical quality, safety, and clinical outcome evaluation. Emphasize that nurses are responsible and accountable for their own practices.

Establish Clarity

To establish accountability within a healthcare facility, clear and specific expectations and goals must be set. If implementing a new strategy, make what needs to be done and accomplished very clear. Describe and follow through with consequences. Like we learned in psych 101, if the reasoning behind goals are explained, nurses are more likely to commit to meeting the expectations.

In the end, providing direction, building culture and clarifying expectations assists nurses in providing high-quality care. Although their schedules are hectic, effective leadership and training holds great value to nurse accountability.

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This article was written by Brandi Diederich, and edited by Steven Foster. Research for this article was provided by American Nurse Today, and the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.

The Changing Tides of Healthcare and the Effect on Nurses

The Changing Tides of Health and The Effect on Nurses
Ask almost any nurse about why they get out of bed in the morning (or evening), and they’ll probably respond with a variation of the same answer: they love caring for their patients.

The very nature of nursing is one of caring, nurturing and being available for patients. However over the past few years, due to the changing tides of healthcare, ever-growing demands have resulted in scores of nurses suffering from burnout, unit turnover, and ultimately less time doing what they do best: caring for their patients.

We believe that in large part this is due to 3 key factors:

Higher Patient Acuity

As unit technology and workflow improve, patients are being admitted and discharged faster, making each moment the nurse spends with the patient more critical than ever. According to the American Nursing Association, (ANA), “rising patient acuity and shortened hospital stays have contributed to recent challenges. Ensuring adequate staffing levels has been shown to:

  • Reduce medical and medication errors
  • Decrease patient complications
  • Decrease mortality
  • Improve patient satisfaction
  • Reduce nurse fatigue
  • Decrease nurse burnout
  • Improve nurse retention and job satisfaction

Electronic Health Records (EHRs)

As much as EHRs have helped in so many areas of 21st-century healthcare, they’re also a bit of a nuisance. Because of the attention the records demand, Nurses can spend upwards of 25% of their time doing routine documentation activities—time that absolutely could be spent caring for patients (Hendrich, Chow, Skierczynski, & Lu, 2008; Yee et al., 2012).

Budget Cuts

According the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Employment Projections 2010-2020, “an additional 1.2 million registered nurses will be needed to address the demand in the workforce by 2020. A dramatic increase in our nation’s aging population, coupled with a sharp increase in the need for chronic care management and primary care, will only exacerbate the demand.”

But at the same time, data from the ANA suggests, “Massive reductions in nursing budgets, combined with the challenges presented by a growing nursing shortage have resulted in fewer nurses working longer hours and caring for sicker patients. This situation compromises care and contributes to the nursing shortage by creating an environment that drives nurses from the bedside.”

It doesn’t take a CNO to understand the harsh realities the nursing field very-well could be faced with in the near-future. Thanks to efforts by amazing nurses and companies, teams are working tirelessly to improve modern-nursing’s outlook. One thing, however, will never change—a nurse’s desire to care for their patients.

To see how Nobl is reimagining modern nursing, take a peek at our hourly rounding process.

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