This week we discussed the application of patient safety. I think that the case study assigned this week was very interesting. The case study discussed how a patient and several healthcare providers were all impacted by a patient safety error. I think that it is very difficult for providers to deal with medical errors. Many providers are embarrassed and are afraid of losing their licenses. We were assigned a literature search this week regarding patient safety application. I found an article where pediatric residents were interviewed and identified barriers to speaking up about patient safety. I was able to relate to the article easily because I struggle with confidence as a nurse because I’m a new graduate. I don’t feel comfortable calling out experienced providers on their errors. I’m glad that other providers share similar feelings with me and that there are groups created by volunteers that can help both providers and patients when safety errors occur. The information this week has made me want to voice my concerns about patient safety more and has boosted my confidence. I would rather speak up to a coworker than have my coworker deal with the guilt of making a safety error.
This week we discussed maintaining a culture of safety. I really enjoyed the case study this week. Stories like Noah’s make me glad that there is quality improvement in health care. I’m glad that the health care field is taking action in preventing the same mistakes from happening. I think that the best way to maintain a culture of safety is to have continuous quality improvement, stay up to date on research, and to have everyone within the facility be a patient advocate. If a member of the staff has a concern about the patient’s safety they should be able to voice it. I will use the information discussed this week to keep my patients safe and to always advocate for them. I feel like the information discussed this week was beneficial. I especially think that the case studies are memorable and that I will be able to apply them to my patient care very easily.
This week in class we discussed building a culture of safety. The thing I found most beneficial was reading about Robin’s story. Robin was a patient that received an enteral feeding via the IV route and ended up dying. Robin died because of many failures in that facility’s system. In response to this error, facilities started using specialty connectors and making it impossible to connect tubing to the wrong route. I will remember this story as a reminder to why we have checks for medications and different tubing for different routes. This story has made me much more cautious in my nursing practice. I always double check when I’m reconnecting tubing. I take a moment to evaluate the safety in the patient room each time before I leave. I feel like this story was very beneficial because it is one that will stick in the classes’ heads throughout their careers.
This week we learned more about quality improvement strategies. We also focused on the the need to incorporate evidence based practice into patient care and how the risk management process works. I felt like the learning activities were very effective this week. The case study focused on how the risk management process can detect problems, find solutions, and then implement the solutions in order to prevent dangerous situations for patients. The discussion this week helped us better understand ways to implement EBP into our practice. There is usually some resistance to change, but keeping an open attitude and understanding that the changes are to better our patients’ situations makes it easier to deal with. My favorite learning activity this week was summarizing an article from AHRQ regarding the need for health care workers to avoid fatigue and sleep deprivation. The article discussed several strategies that would be effective in helping to deal with fatigue during work but I don’t think that most of them would work for nurses. I don’t think it will ever be possible for nurses to be able to take naps at work. The article did mention that using caffeine could be beneficial. Many nurses use caffeine to help prevent fatigue, but I think it’s more of just a band-aid solution for a larger problem. Getting more sleep or naps would be more healthy and sustainable than caffeine consumption.
This week we studied quality improvement strategies. I was hoping to learn more quality improvement strategies this week, and that’s exactly what happened. I was able to learn a lot more about working as an interdisciplinary team. I was also able to learn about improving processes and preventing incidents from occurring. I feel like the critical thinking and case studies were both beneficial this week. I was able to apply information to real life situations. I also thought that the group discussion this week was great at helping figure out how to involve the family in patient care. In the future, I will use the information taught in class this week to improve patient care and prevent incidents from occurring.
This week in class we focused on continuous quality improvement, specifically benchmarks. I expected to learn about the benefits of benchmarks in continuous quality improvement this week. I learned about the benefits of benchmarks and the need to have them in healthcare. Benchmarks help visualize goals and provide incentive from continuous improvement. One of the assignments this week was to find a format that we liked for hospital balanced scorecard. The scorecard provides a easily visible analysis of the starting points, goals, and results of various protocols. This is an example of a hospital balances scorecard I found this week.
If I am involved in a quality improvement team in the future, I will be sure to involve benchmarks in our process. This will ensure continuous quality improvement.
This week we focused on the roles of health care personnel in patient care. I was hoping to gain a better understanding of the resources available to me to help provide the best care possible for my patients. This week I able to learn about the different resources available in patient care. Applying the information in case studies, critical thinking scenarios, and discussions helped prepare for situations that might occur while I’m working. This week I felt like I was also able to become more familiar with diabetes education. I am not an expert in diabetes, let alone in another language, so knowing that people like diabetes educators and translators are available help makes my role as a nurse less overwhelming. Diabetes is a complex condition and requires a great deal of education.
While I’m working as a nurse in the future, I will be sure to be aware of my resources and of people that can help me in difficult situations.
This week we learned about legal and ethical issues in nursing. Before this unit, I was familiar with legal and ethical issues in nursing but I didn’t have a lot of experience responding to them. I was able to learn a lot by applying information I know to the case study, discussion, and critical thinking assignments this week. If experiences like this ever happen in my nursing career I will be better prepared to respond to them. This week I was able to learn more about assisted suicide and the policies that are in place in the states where it is legal. While looking for information on the subject, I stumbled across this chart and thought that the information in it was very interesting. This chart discusses the number of assisted suicides in Oregon and the reasons why people chose to end their lives.
Au, H. Y. (2010). Should physician-assisted suicide be legal?. Angles. Retrieved from http://web.mit.edu/angles/2010_Hoyin_Au.html
I expected to learn quality improvement strategies. This unit helped me better understand quality improvement strategies. I really liked the videos on the burned toast and the funnel. It helped me better understand incident prevention techniques and why outcomes vary so much. This information will help me better patient outcomes and factors that can affect them. I feel like I learned a lot this week and that the information will be very beneficial in my nursing career.
This week I was hoping to learn more about concepts related to quality in the healthcare system. Before this week I had never really thought much about quality before, but I knew that there were gaps between the definitions of quality from patients and from healthcare providers. This unit helped me to close the gaps in my thinking. The definition of quality will vary between everyone, but I think that keeping people safe, helping them feel better, and being nice to them are pretty much included in everyone’s definition. I really think that the M&M assignment helped me get a much better view of the definition of quality. In the future, I will try to meet my patients’ definitions of quality in care. I think that frequently asking the patient if I can help them with anything (other than basic needs) will help improve the care I provide. I think that this material will help me become a better nurse and patient advocate.