With each day, I feel empowered, engaged, and energized about patient safety and quality improvement. I am reminded on why I chose nursing as a career and my desire to assist vulnerable populations and serve as a change agent in healthcare institutions.
I found the discussions involving the power of storytelling and cognitive interviewing especially interesting and thought provoking. In particular, I was struck by the story of the physician pulling out the central line and the complications that followed due to lack of protocol, training, and a general health system malfunction. I focused a lot of my reflective analysis day one on the sense of powerlessness and vulnerability patient and families can feel while navigating the healthcare system. However, an essential component that was highlighted today was how the healthcare system can isolate and set providers up for failure. Oftentimes, the culture in institutions does not allow for providers (MD, RN, PA, NP, etc.) to feel supported or cared for. This can lead to a number of long term complications that were highlighted including patient harm, burn out, work arounds, and compassion fatigue. How can we create safe systems that empower patients and clinicians? A powerful tool that was introduced today was “safety moments” and “safety huddles.” I would like to bring this tool to my own unit. Each morning, we review the patient’s in the unit and update the staff on hospital initiatives, changes in medications, and new professional development opportunities. Having a 30-60 second pause to remind staff about safety and quality improvement would assist in changing culture and attitudes.