Good Example Of Essay On Field Placement In Health Care Administration
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On this first day of my placement with the Magnet team, we set out to visit the X hospital as part of the annual assessment visit. Magnet is a brainchild of the American Nurses Credentialing Center or ANCC to rank and rate the hospitals offering the best medical care health wise. The conception of this idea came about in the early part of the 1980’s after the American Academy of Nursing’s study into successful hospitals and the common characteristics that they share (Aiken, Havens, & Sloane, 2000). Magnet aims to provide information to consumers, which is important for comparison purposes. There can be little doubt about the effectiveness of this program given the large number of hospitals seeking this certification. In short, magnet approval acts as a certification of quality. Hospitals normally fill out and submit an application document to the ANCC and a site visit is scheduled after the document has been reviewed (ANCC Magnet Recognition Program).
My first day of placement coincided with the scheduled day for the visit of X Hospital. Therefore, I joined the team visiting the hospital in an observatory role. On this day, the objective was to understand and gain in-depth practical knowledge of the appraisal process and the working of the Magnet team. On arrival, I immediately noticed that the Hospital was well prepared for our visit. All nurses were smartly dressed, and the Hospital was generally well organized. Again, the Hospital had organized the nurses and staff members into focus groups, which our appraisal team was going to meet with. These focus groups were made up of members of staff with good familiarity with the workings of the various operations and the structures of the Hospital as had appeared in the application document. These staff members eloquently guided us through the organization’s operations answering all our questions.
An observation I made about the focus groups was that their membership was drawn from across all levels of the organization, ranging from the top management, or executive leaders, to the nurses’ executives and even the Hospital Quality Control department. All departments were represented in these groups. The Hospital’s organization was a great lesson on the value of efficient processes in the organization. Despite the limited time we had, we were able to accomplish the objective of the visit. Our appraisal team’s method of interviewing the nurses in a friendly and conversationalist manner allowed them to relax and kill any built up tension at the visit. I was also impressed by the professional way in which the hospital had developed relationships between the medical and non-medical staff. This interdisciplinary cooperation was evident throughout the organization, and I concluded that it was responsible for the success of the Hospital. Overall, the experience was superb, and I gained real insight into the power of proper planning. I was also able to gain knowledge about efficiency and tools to guarantee it. As a research question, I would like to investigate the frequency of appearance of the organizational features noted here in other magnet hospitals.
As part of my placement exercise, I am attached with the Director Nursing Manager on this day. Being a very busy person, a day in his life is a rather hectic one. Various activities were conducted, and we held deliberations on a range of topics. The first activity was to attend a safety meeting. This meeting was scheduled to be attended by all departmental heads, and the purpose of the meeting is to discuss the safety mechanisms in place for the Hospital and to review the implementation of these mechanisms. Specifically, the agendas of discussion were the issue of safety huddles and nursing inter-shift reports. The Hospital had recently introduced safety huddles, which are informal meetings that are held in order to share issues of concern that may have had an influence on the safety of patients. These meetings are held regularly and are very short. Being a relatively new concept, the idea was due for review and during the meeting, I noted that there had been full adoption of this idea. Nursing intershift reports were due for discussion since there were a number of adverse patient events that had occurred in the previous month because of incomplete shift reports. In one of these cases, a patient had been administered a drug that she was allergic to because the nurse doing the handover had forgotten to include that in her report. Due to these incidents, the Nursing Manager had requested a report on the method and systems in place for preparation of these reports.
The National Patient Safety Goals implementation was another agenda (Joint Commission, 2015). Under this, I established that the Hospital had instituted a two-step method of patient identification in which the patient is identified using their name as the primary identifier and the date of birth as a secondary one. This was in line with the proposals in the goals and had helped to slash the occurrence of adverse patient events such as wrong medication (Joint Commission, 2015). The use of technology was another important observation and particularly notable in this regard was that the Hospital maintained electronic medical records which was efficient and saved a lot of time, since they could be easily and instantly accessed with the use of an authorized login and password (Southon, Sauer, & Dampney, 1997). From this day, I was able to learn the importance of technology to healthcare, as well as the importance of performance appraisal. An area for possible research is into how the use of technology has revolutionized healthcare.
On this day, I am attached with the clinical educator at the hospital. The clinical educator at the hospital is in charge of developing and evaluating the systems of continuous education for the nurses and the clinical staff. This is in line with the industry-wide practice and with the teaching on this topic. A nursing educator has a passion for teaching and for nursing, and this was evident in the way she went about her duties. Since her role is about bringing improvements to the functioning of the nursing staff, she has to be abreast of latest developments in the nursing world, and this was evident from her reading of various nursing journals. The nursing educator agreed that with the increasing complexity of healthcare in the USA, continuous education was vital and hence she has put in place nursing workshops every three months where the nurses in every department are taught on the various developments in their field of specialization. The educator liaises with specialists who impart this knowledge at seminars and workshops. She also uses these three-month intervals to do competency assessment of the staff, which focuses on the testing of the knowledge, as well as the skills and behavior of the staff. Through the day with the nursing educator, I was able to see the value of continuous education and how it is an important aspect of performance improvement. A possible research question could be the importance of nurse educators in the healthcare system today.
In this day, I was attached to the vice president. Here, I attended the Capacity Alert Plan meeting and from it, I learned that the Hospital has instituted a capacity alert system based on a color code (Orlovsky, n.d). This system is technology based and involves using a range of colors to indicate the hospital’s demand in real time, and the capacity to meet that demand (Orlovsky, n.d). The system considers all the hospitals demands and produces a color rating alongside possible measures that can be instituted to cater for the demands. The system is updated every four hours. Attending this meeting helped me to see the use of technology in resource planning (Khanna, Boyle, & Zeitz, 2014). The vice president is able with the use of the system to see areas with short supply of resources and hence plan for allocation. From the discussion about the MPS asset reduction, I learned about the organization’s commitment to cost reduction (Hall, 2010). The adoption of this measure highlighted the ways in which the management has adopted cost-cutting measures. The other lesson from this discussion was on the issue of information security. Specifically, how this could be safeguarded through the centralization of office output (Hall, 2010). The discussion about worked hours per patient day gave me an opportunity to learn about staffing and the importance of having the right number of staff.
Discussing the administrative policy and manual was crucial to understanding how the management ensures that there are no gray areas in the job description. For example, the inclusion of the scope of practice indicates the management’s focus on clarity of responsibilities. The procedure manual explains the processes and right ways of doing things. This is integral to a proper running of the hospital. A possible research question is on the cost benefits of an MPS system.
On this day, I was attached to the unit manager of a critical care unit. Our discussion centered on AACN certification. I learned that AACN certification certifies critical care nurses. The unit manager emphasized the importance of this certification particularly given the delicate nature of their work as they deal with life threatening situations. Thus, it is important that they possess some form of competence validation. The manager further informed me that in her unit all nurses have the certification hence even the patients are sure that they are being handled by the best. I observed that the nurses in this unit were all highly trained, and this made them very efficient at their work. This indicated to me the importance of training for ensuring competence. The nurses in this crucial segment are also highly motivated, which was a result of the good relationship they had with their unit manager. The lesson drawn from this was the crucial role the administration plays in employee motivation. Due to these nurses being specialized in their areas, quality of services offered was very high, and customers appeared very satisfied. This reflects the importance of job specialization. A possible research topic here would be the role of certification in ensuring quality in healthcare.
Aiken, L. H., Havens, D. S., & Sloane, D. M. (2000). Magnet nursing services recognition programme . Nursing Standard, 41-47.
ANCC Magnet Recognition Program. (n.d.). Retrieved March 21, 2015, from American Nurses Credentialing Center: http://www.nursecredentialing.org/magnet.aspx
Beck, S. (1990). Developing a primary nursing performance appraisal tool. Nursing Management, 36-42.
Chandra, A., & Frank, Z. D. (2004). Utilization of performance appraisal systems in health care organizations and improvement strategies for supervisors. The Health Care Manager, 25-30.
Evans, R., Elwyn, G., & Edwards, A. (2004). Review of instruments for peer assessment of physicians. BMJ: British Medical Journal, 1240-1243.
Hall, S. (2010, January). Managed Print Services - CIPS. Retrieved March 21, 2015, from CIPS: http://www.cips.org/Documents/Knowledge/Categories-Commodities/Marketing-Services/Print-agency/Essential-Media_Managed_Print_Services.pdfFMarketing-Services%2FPrint-agency%2FEssential-Media_Managed_Print_Services.pdf&ei=
Joint Commission. (2015). 2015 National Hospital Patient Safety Goals. Retrieved March 21, 2015, from Joint Commission: Accreditation, Health Care, Certification: http://www.jointcommission.org/assets/1/6/2015_hap_npsg_er.pdf
Khanna, S., Boyle , J., & Zeitz , K. (2014). Using capacity alert calls to reduce overcrowding in a major public hospital. Australian Health Review, 318-324.
Orlovsky, C. (n.d.). Color-coded System Alerts to Hospital Capacity. Retrieved March 21, 2015, from NursingZone.com: http://www.nursezone.com/nursing-news-events/devices-and-technology/Color-coded-System-Alerts-to-Hospital-Capacity_24156.aspx
Southon, F. C., Sauer, C., & Dampney, C. N. (1997). Information Technology in Complex Health Services: Organizational Impediments to Successful Technology Transfer and Diffusion. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association, 112–124.
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