To kick off National Nurses Week, Voalte sponsored the Nursing Research and Evidence-Based Practice Council’s Knowledge and Innovation Conference at Sarasota Memorial Hospital. The half-day program featured podium presentations, poster presentations, a panel discussion and a keynote address.
It’s always nice to see former colleagues from my 10 years as a Sarasota Memorial nurse, and even better to hear about the inspiring new programs that are improving patient outcomes at the hospital. In one presentation titled, “Interprofessional collaboration improves outcomes for patients with open fractures,” we heard about remarkable progress in ensuring open fracture patients receive antibiotics within 60 minutes of entering the Emergency Department.
For this high-risk, low-incidence patient set, that “golden hour” has a huge impact on outcomes. With new policies and protocols in place for quick collaboration between the entire trauma team, results showed that in the last four months, 100 percent of patients with an open fracture had antibiotics administered within 60 minutes. The collaboration and communication involved in this achievement is impressive. Consider all the people involved: trauma physicians and nurse techs and X-ray technicians, in some cases. To be successful, the entire team needs to communicate quickly and effectively to carry out their tasks. Time is of the utmost importance to decrease the patient’s risk of infection.
Another exciting initiative is the hospital’s dedication to getting patients ambulatory as early as possible, even those who are still dependent on a ventilator. After a lot of advance planning, intricate collaboration and sign-off from physicians, the nurses, technicians, physical therapists, respiratory therapists and Pharmacists coordinate to get patients out of bed and not only walking the halls of the hospital but also outside in the fresh air!
According to Karen Reynolds, Geriatric Nursing Leadership Academy Fellow-Advanced Practice Nurse, “It’s a big effort to get doctors onboard and orchestrate all the details involved, but knowing how happy it makes the patient is worth its weight in gold.”
Those of us in the audience had tears in our eyes thinking about how impactful it is to get these seriously ill patients out walking in the Florida sunshine, even for a short time. Success stories like this are a tribute to nurses everywhere. In my experience, nurses really embrace collaborative care and know that it’s crucial to work together as a team to facilitate the best possible patient outcomes.
If you have a story to share about collaborative care at your hospital, please send email to firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d love to hear from you during National Nurses Week, or anytime!
Dana Peco, MS, CCRN, CBC, is Clinical Practice Solution Manager at Voalte.