Caring Science Value – The Difference in Nursing Surviving vs. Thriving

I have been talking about How We Do Caring Science Leadership in the last 2 blogs:

  • What a WCSI Recognized Organization Looks Like
  • Merging Our Nursing Value/Caring Language Into One Voice (leader voice)

I touch on several competing perspectives in how I see the future of nursing and what is required for nursing to Survive vs. Thrive in the healthcare industry:

  • The ANCC (Am Nurses Credentialing Center) has evidence that supports that Magnet hospitals are the gold standard and the future of the nursing profession.  I say OK, I accept that Magnet efforts have provided structural empowerment practices that have advanced nursing in HC in monumental ways.
  • Caring Science implementation in healthcare organizations –  WCSI Recognized Organization–  These standards are also generating evidence that supports nursing’s professional impact. These standards have the added focus of caring science practices that positively impact on patients and organizations
  • The debate for Nursing’s Value? – Evidenced Based Practice surged nursing’s value into the limelight by specifically articulating nurses’ contributions in the world of medical science, the hard sciences. Sharon Pappas provides a comprehensive review and argument that nursing’s value must be clearly evident in terms of clinical and cost outcomes in each step of  healthcare reform.  No doubt that this is a critical strategy for nursing’s survival in the industry.
  • Giving Voice to Nursing’s Value-  And then there is Suzanne Gordon’s flag waving message that nursing as a profession needs to learn HOW to Give Voice to Nursing’s value.  I posted her poem about nursing again.

There is a lot to keep in balance when viewing nursing within the healthcare industry.  Today …. I present what one Big organization did to promote the value of both nursing and caring …


Big Caring Program rollout

The one big Caring Science rollout was at Kaiser Permanente (KP) Northern California.  The details are in Nursing Administration Quarterly  2016.

To my knowledge, this is the widest spanning and most robust Caring Science Program rollout that exists; it started in 2012 and their organization-wide Caring Science education continues today.

It involved everything Caring Science:

  •  a 21 hospital integrated health care system located in KP Northern California
  • a professional caring practice model guided by caring science theory, values, philosophy
  • participation in clinical caring scholarship/research
  •  more than 25 000 nurses across all inpatient, outpatient, and continuum of care areas
  • a comprehensive initiative to further engage the “hearts and minds” of its nursing workforce
  • focusing on value-based care and improved performance in quality, service, and affordability – based on the Triple Aim, then the Quadruple Aim
  • reinforcing the importance of engagement, shared accountability, and purposeful collaboration
  • 18 months of 55 interactive educational forums for point-of-care care teams and leadership

The educational structure:

  • Leadership alignment among the senior levels
  • Point-of-Care Staff forums
  • Leadership Intensives
  • Combined Point-of-Care Staff and Leaders
  • Celebration and Focus on the Future

Since then,  the organization has consistently delivered Caring Science education to all nurses and has deepened their focus on developing nursing leaders throughout the organization.

1. Appreciative Leadership – Core Competencies and Leadership Dialogue Scenarios

    1. Relational capacity to mobilize accountable action
    2. Leader self-awareness and self-confidence
    3. Languaging expectation and obligation
    4.  Performance and demonstration of outcome
    5. Integrity and the inclusion as a way of leading

2. Nurse Scholars Academy – as mentioned above

3. Caritas Coaches-  KP Northern CA has the largest # of certified Caritas Coaches (~ 35) of any one organization. The Watson Caritas Coaching education program ushers each nurse through self-transformation of caring consciousness and use of caring language, which benefits the nurses in their domain thereafter, like ripples in a pond …

One Big Question –  Is this our future? 

Although the KP Northern CA rollout is impressive, it is rare.  (note- one could say that they had to do a Big comprehensive rollout just based on size alone; 21 hospitals, mind you!)

There are many other healthcare organizations that have rolled out Caring Science and have also demonstrated hard science evidence of nursing value.

We need all of it!

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