A variety of new programs are being implemented for frontline nurses at the 11 Appalachian Regional Healthcare (ARH) hospitals to enhance the level of patient care.
“Nurses are the heart of patient care and we want to make sure they have every tool at their disposal to deliver the best possible care,” said Joe Grossman, president and CEO of ARH, about the new initiatives.
“It starts as a dual endeavor,” said Dee Hughes, community chief nursing officer (CCNO) at Harlan ARH Hospital.
“Nurses are the largest employee group as being on the frontline, so they know what is going on first hand. We want to communicate from a leadership point of view, but we also want to hear what they have to say. We are working on improving communication and while it might seem like it should come from the top down, it’s really from the top and around because the key to good communication is providing information awhile listening to our nurses and their experiences.”
Hughes notes that Harlan ARH has always been extremely community focused, but she says things have changed in the area, forcing the healthcare system to view how patients receive care and make adjustments to better serve the community. Loss of jobs, drug addiction and more screening as part of the Affordable Care Act is just the beginning.
According to Hughes, there are a number of initiatives being rolled out system-wide that are reshaping the way care is given. This includes employee training, evaluating the best way to staff and retain top employees, a multi-pronged rewards program, improved communication and solid leadership.
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