Debi’s Desk: Great Community Work and a Shared Governance Column Ahead

Debi-Albert2Hello, and welcome to the February issue of At the Forefront: Nursing Edition.

I want to start off by thanking all of you who have continued to put the care of our patients and their families first during these very difficult and distracting times.

It continues to be a credit to your professionalism and integrity that you have all kept your focus on where it should be: our patients.

There are a number or great stories in this issue and I want to bring a few to your attention:

  • Though saving lives is part of our business, I am always exhilarated and filled with pride when I hear stories like what happened to Robin Betts, RN, CNOR. A man is alive today thanks to Robin’s quick work, professionalism and training, and a random trip to the gym that forever changed the course of one family’s life. Please read about what happened.
  • University of Chicago Medicine Nursing continues to be a leader in this organization in driving gains in safety and quality. Our Director of Surgical and Multispecialty Services, Gretchen Pacholek, MSN, RN, co-led an institution-wide task force that has dropped our rate of preventable venous thromboembolisms to zero. That’s a phenomenal accomplishment. Read about the great work staff from all disciplines have done to eliminate preventable VTEs.
  • And I’m very proud to see what our nurses are doing in the community. Driven by Nursing Shared Governance, many of you participated in the Hygiene for the Holiday’s project that culminated in bringing much-needed education and supplies to area Chicago Public Schools kids on January 27th. Thank you everyone who donated to the cause. Please read this story and be inspired to keep giving back to our neighborhoods.

The hygiene project is but one project Nursing Shared Governance is doing. A lot of work was done by everyone over the past couple of years to improve the structure and function of our Shared Governance.

Starting next month, we will begin running a regular column in At the Forefront: Nursing Edition devoted to highlighting the great work Shared Governance is doing to improve the professional practice of nursing at UChicago Medicine.

We intend to highlight exciting developments in each of the house-wide councils, collaboration between them, the coordinating council, unit-based councils, local practice councils, and the overall progress UChicago Nursing is making to improve patient safety and care outcomes.

We intend to explore topics, such as:

  • The progress the Evidence-Based Practice (EBP)/Research Council is making in bringing an understanding of the Iowa model for EBP to our staff, and the progress made in nursing research, grant funding and donations made for nursing research.
  • Our Advanced Practice Nursing Council (APRNs) progress on developing a transition to the APRN role to help newly graduated APRNs in their transition to an advanced practice role. The work the Interprofessional Quality and Safety Council is doing to try to standardize important communication across all disciplines and services.

Please take some time to read these and all the stories in Nursing Edition. Think about the stories each of you have in your units every day that deserve a wider audience.

This newsletter is meant to be a source of useful information and a means to highlight what is happening in the University of Chicago Nursing community. If you know of great patient care stories, please reach out to your manager so we can be sure to highlight these stories and projects that are so deserving of attention and recognition by all of your colleagues.





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