The registered nurse is not only a caregiver, but a scientist, leader and educator. By focusing on the role of registered nurses (RNs), we’ve been able to drive change in the way that adult acute care hospitals provide care. We have approached this work through four key strategies:
Ensuring a sufficiently large and well-prepared RN workforce
Strengthening the leadership skills of RNs and other front-line clinicians
Implementing evidence-based practices in the inpatient care setting
Improving the transition of patients from the hospital
With a focus on the San Francisco Bay Area and Greater Sacramento, our efforts have measurably improved patient care in more than 80 percent of the adult acute care hospitals in these regions. We did this by developing and implementing regional solutions to improving care and strengthening the workforce.
As a result, care is more safe. For example, the number of hospital infections has dropped significantly: 70 percent of San Francisco Bay Area hospitals have reduced ventilator-associated pneumonia and central-line bloodstream infections to essentially zero. Hospitals also have reduced medication errors, pressure ulcers and patient falls—all complications which RNs play a critical role in identifying and addressing. A collaborative of 21 San Francisco Bay Area hospitals reduced readmissions by 11 percent in an effort to implement evidence-based models to improve the transition from the hospital. In addition, we have supported the training of 2,000 RNs and other front-line clinicians through leadership development programs and collaborative projects.
In addition to local impact, we have shared—through publication, replication and mentoring—the initiative’s approach and programs throughout California and the U.S. Our initiative is scheduled to conclude at the end of 2015. Its legacy will be the improved nursing care that patients receive as a result of the effort of our grantees and other partners.