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Charge Nurse Development Strategies in an Acute Care Hospital

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Title:Charge Nurse Development Strategies in an Acute Care Hospital
Authors:Hata, Rose
Contributors:Kathman, Julie (advisor)
Nursing (department)
Charge Nurse
program development
staff development
Date Issued:2019
Publisher:University of Hawai'i at Manoa
Abstract:The charge nurse (CN) role is a crucial leadership role in an acute care hospital. CNs ensure unit leadership throughout every shift. CNs constantly work with others to manage unit flow and impact quality, safety, and patient satisfaction (Connelly, Nabarrete, & Smith, 2003; Eggenberger, 2012; Wojciechowski, Ritze-Cullen, & Tyrrell, 2011). To ensure safety and efficient unit operations, formal training for the CN is necessary (Flynn, Prufeta, & Minghillo-Lipari, 2010; Schwarzkopf, Sherman, & Kiger, 2012). Even though the CN role is an essential leadership role, many nurses are promoted to the CN role based on clinical expertise without formal leadership training. For CNs to be successful in their role, a formal training program and continued support are recommended.
The purpose of this DNP project was to implement a charge nurse development course at an acute care hospital to increase CN competencies. Synthesis of the literature review concluded the following: (1) CN role is crucial for unit outcomes and patient safety; (2) CN leadership training is scant; (3) leadership training adds great value; and (4) competency-based workshops and skill assessments over time are helpful. Iowa Model Revised: Evidence-Based Practice to Promote Excellence in Health Care model by the Iowa Model Collaborative (2017) was selected to guide this DNP project.
This DNP project was an evidence-based quality improvement project to improve competencies of CNs at the hospital by providing a formal training program that incorporates leadership skills. With partnership of Human Resources department and a nurse manager focus group, eight charge nurse competencies were identified. A four-hour pilot training course was selected that best matched the competency needs of the organization. Total of 21 CNs completed this course and 100% of the nurses recommended this course for other CNs. Fifty percent of the participants valued the course as “good” while 46% of the participants valued the course as “exceptional”. Greater than 90% of the nurses found the course relevant to the CN role and reported that the course will enable them to better lead their team.
To support continued growth of the CN participants, nurse managers were provided with a standardized coaching guides that included three activities for the manager and the nurse. Managers were satisfied with the systematic coaching structure provided to aid the success of their CNs. Continual coaching by managers and performance feedback on the CN competencies by the managers to the CNs may provide the support needed for the CNs to continue to grow in their role. The limited implementation period allowed only a pilot of 21 CNs to participate in this course; however, the systematic process utilized for this course development allows for repeated content to train and equip additional CNs with leadership skills necessary for the CN role.
CNs ensure safe and efficient unit operations on a continual basis. Increased engagement and competence of the CNs are essential for any unit to improve patient outcomes and to create a healthy working environment. Leadership training and continual growth of CN in their competencies are investments for all organizations.
Pages/Duration:70 pages
Appears in Collections: D.N.P. - Nursing

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