Risk Management

1. What did you actually learn from the unit.

This weeks discussion focused on risk management of a unit. We discussed the problems that can occur and who is at fault as well as what needs to be done to remedy the situation and avoid problems with repeat circumstances in the past.

2. Discuss your feelings/experiences from the team activities? Did it change your opinion on the subject? If so, how? If not, why?

Our discussion this week was a scenario regarding an ED patient in restraints, but his attempt to use a lighter to get out of his restraints resulted in a fire and serious burn injuries leaving the patient severely injured. Protocol in this scenario called for security to check for contraband and place the patient in restraints. The ED nurse was to do Q15 min checks on the patient. My group agreed protocol needed to be revised to where the patient needed a one to one to watch him at all times and the ED nurse should have had less of a patient load with having to do 15 min checks on the patient. We also agreed protocol can have the security check for contraband again after the patient has been restrained. Thorough documentation, filing an incident report, and notification to necessary departments such as manager, risk management, etc should also occur right away.
There’s a lot more involved in risk management than I had anticipated, but I appreciate having them as a resource and that one of their goals to help do what is best for the nurse.

3. How you will utilize the information learned in your nursing practice.

As a nurse, my role in risk management is essential. First and foremost, monitoring and evaluating the patient care is pivotal. Proper utilization of incident reports is another important function I can do as a nurse. They can often feel inconvenient and time consuming, but they are extremely important. In short, incident reports should be utilized as one means to correct nursing care that does not meet the patient’s needs and that may result in injury or death to the patient.

4. Your personal feelings about the material covered.

It’s important to know all your resources as a nurse so you’re able to give the best care possible to your patients. It was an interesting topic this week. Risk management’s overall goal is to reduce or prevent any type of risk to the health care facility, and it’s important for nurses to know who they are and what they do.

Motivation

This week we discussed how important motivation in the workplace can be, and how having a good morale can really go a long way in retaining happy staff.  Our group came up with several ideas to boost employee morale, and we found it interesting many of our individual ideas coincided with one another. 

1. Talking with employees to find out WHY morale is low will be extremely helpful. It’s hard to fix the problem if you don’t know what it is.

2. As a supervisor, work among your employees more often. You will get an idea of the tasks and struggles that they may be dealing with. Because of this, you will be able to tackle these concerns and issues more readily.

3. Special occasion parties (birthdays, baby showers, holidays, etc.) is a super great way to unite a unit and help people build relationships in a non-stressful way that will carry over into the workplace.

4. Create a suggestions/concerns box, give it a cute name like the “Voice Box. Employees can voice their concerns, ideas, suggestions, wishes, etc. It can be anonymous or with their name. ALL ideas should be addressed in some way or another so that staff know they are being taken seriously. This will help to identify the issues that are causing employees to leave. It will also boost morale by allowing employees to feel heard and that their ideas/concerns are important to management.

5. Hold semi-annual family fun nights at a venue or rent out a place, like a trampoline gym or museum, for an evening or day for employees and their families. This shows employees that you care about them and their families and their personal lives. It gives employees a chance to re-energize with their families, and have some good wholesome fun, which is good for the soul and for morale!

6. Short Private/ confidential discussions/interviews with each employee. The reason morale is at an all time low has not been identified. Meeting with each individual will given them an open floor and space to share exactly what is concerning them. You may notice a trend that all employees are struggling with. Once you know the problem, you can start to create solutions.

#7- Provide opportunities for growth through tuition reimbursement, wage raise with higher education degrees.

It’s important for employees to feel valued and appreciated. A thank you note can go a long way towards boosting an employee’s spirits, and its important to having bonding opportunities such as holiday parties. It can be stressful at times and super busy, but it’s nice to have something fun and simple when time permits.  Sometimes we get into a routine and forget all the little pieces that go into keeping a hospital running smoothly. I’ve been fortunate to work for/with managers and coworkers who know how to balance stress, appreciation for one another, and fun. I’d like to continue what they have done for me on any future units I may have the opportunity be in a leadership role. 

Conflict in the Workplace

1. What did you actually learn from the unit?

This week we discussed conflict and various forms of communication in the workplace. We also discussed the conflicts involved in the move The Guardian with Kevin Costner and Ashton Kutcher.

Conflict – When two independent parties have a disagreement on a topic, direction, or goals to be achieved.

Assertive Communication – Being firm in your stance, message is delivered clearly and calmly, setting appropriate boundaries, express your point clearly and confidently, recognizing your needs matter as much as everyone else, compromise is possible.

Aggressive Communication – Being hostile in stance, refusing to see any other side of a conflict, can lead to shouting or aggression, talking over others.

2. Discuss your feelings/experiences from the team activities? Did it change your opinion on the subject? If so, how? If not, why?

As a group, we came to a general consensus of what we felt the best definitions for each of the words was by combining our definitions together. It helped us to collaborate and effectively work together on communication the appropriate way. I don’t feel like it really changed my opinion because we were on the same page from the beginning.

3. How you will utilize the information learned in your nursing practice?

In regards to the movie, you never know what other people are struggling with/through in their lives. Communication is key, and you never know what you might learn in return. I also learned I would like to become better with assertive communication. I have a tendency to avoid confrontations, and I’m not very assertive when I do communicate. There are times when assertive communication is appropriate, and I will strive to be better with this.

4. Your personal feelings about the material covered.

This is an important topic to discuss because it does happen. There are various types of conflict, and how you handle this in the work environment can influence the people around you.

Strategic Planning

1. What did you actually learn from the unit.

This week we discussed strategic planning in the work place and for the future programs offered at Utah Valley University. We agreed it would be beneficial to have a MSN program that focused on Nurse Practitioner specialty. I learned plans can fail due to false assumptions, not knowing the overall goal, not having enough alternatives, inadequate time or resources, and inadequate delegation of authority. I also learned to avoid the “group hug.” Trying to please everyone or take into consideration all ideas can delay the project and cause bigger issues.

2. Discuss your feelings/experiences from the team activities? Did it change your opinion on the subject? If so, how? If not, why?

Our activity this week was definitely outside my comfort zone. As a group, we were in charge of a community with a 100 bed community hospital. Our goal was to maximize profit by strategic building medical facilities through out the city. We were also competing against another team. It was intimidating to say the least, but the once I got an idea it lead to other ideas. It helped to think of the project sort of like the monopoly game where I want to purchase property and place hotels where I can gain the most profit. In this case we are looking for profit and how to offer the best medical care necessary that is also easily accessible.

3. How you will utilize the information learned in your nursing practice.

I learned I need to be willing to be the bad guy in a work environment, but this can be difficult for me. I’m more likely to place myself where I’m in a “group hug” trying to make everyone happy.

4. Your personal feelings about the material covered.

I thought the strategic planning activity was creative and difficult as a group. Although there are five people in my group, two people have stopped participating in assignments the last few weeks. It’s frustrating, and this week was even more so when we have a big assignment like this to work on combined with a group exam.