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Interprofessional Accountability: Share your successes…

Nurse managers know the value of staff accountability—it’s an essential ingredient in the recipe for consistent, high-quality patient care.

Building those accountability muscles takes on new urgency as the “care continuum” becomes more than a buzz word. Accountability is now the nurse’s greatest challenge, what with the increased pressure on nurses to delegate in order to work at “top of license,” the ongoing need to coordinate care with different in-house professions (pharmacy, social work, etc.), and the necessity of transitioning patients to care by unaffiliated, outside caregivers.

We’re developing an in-service handbook to support staff nurse accountability skills, and are in need of several real-world examples of interprofessional accountability in action. Would you be willing to submit your techniques for effective hand-offs, successful communications, or example scripts to include in the handbook? Leave a comment or send me an email if you do!

For any piece we choose for the book, I’ll send you a copy of either Team-Building Handbook: Improving Nurse-to-Nurse Relationships or Team-Building Handbook: Improving Nurse-Physician Communications, our latest nursing handbooks.

Take Care of the Caretakers; Take Care of Ourselves

Nurses, the caretakers on the front line, often work shifts of 12 hours and more, and may work up to 50 or even 60 hours per week. Fatigue is a way of life, threatening the health of those nurses, as well as the quality of the care they can provide. As a nurse manager, you struggle with balancing staffing with your budget, so you know this story all too well.

Now the ANA is pushing for new limits on consecutive night shifts and shifts longer than 12 hours (see ANA press release) as a way of supporting the health of nurses, positive patient outcomes, and nursing professional standards. Until the ANA recommendations become practice, what can you, the nurse manager, do to take care of yourself and your staff today, to improve the work environment and the energy they bring to it?

(Hint, the answer comes from our latest nursing book, Essential Skills for Nurse Managers, and you will find suggestions for how to renew your energy here.)

Aetna’s Preceptor Program: The Proof Is in the Program

Do preceptors and preceptees benefit by moving from an
ad-hoc preceptoring program to a formal one?

Lorri Freifeld, editor-in-chief at Training: The Source for Professional Development, recently reported some exciting findings from a formal nurse preceptor program initiated by Aetna, Inc.

Following a 6-month pilot, Aetna launched a formal nurse preceptor program in January 2013. At its outset, the formal program provided 65% of new hires with preceptors, incorporated beefed-up workshop offerings, instituted weekly progress reports between preceptors and their supervisors, increased communication of best practices, created a community calendar of training events, and implemented on-demand training and follow-up with recently preceptored new hires.

The result after three months?

  • 53% of new hires were managing a full caseload
  • 100% of preceptors said soft skills training was sufficient (up from 0%!)
  • 97% of preceptors felt the tools and resources were effective
  • 67% of new hires reported having adequate time with their preceptors

And after six months?

  • Turnover was down 50%
  • 100% of new hires had a preceptor
  • 150 new preceptor volunteers had joined the program

Pretty impressive and immediate results from a new program. Kudos to Aetna for committing to a professional approach in this most important phase of a new hire’s experience.


To read the full article, click here.

To see related HCPro offerings, including The Preceptor Program Builder, click here.