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USA Health System
News Release
Mobile, Ala. (November 11, 2008)
Contact: Bob Lowry, (251) 471-7262

Patient Care Program at USA Medical Center Featured in National Publication

A national nursing publication is featuring the University of South Alabama Medical Center for its ongoing participation in a two-year nationwide study to improve patient bedside care.
The November issue of Voice of Nursing Leadership, the official publication of the American Organization of Nurse Executives, profiles USA Medical Center and two other leading hospitals that are among 67 nationally taking part in the "Transforming Care at the Bedside" initiative.
Transforming Care at the Bedside, or TCAB, is designed to improve the quality and safety of patient care on medical and surgical units, to increase the vitality and retention of nurses, and to improve the effectiveness of the entire care team. The study is sponsored by the American Organization of Nurse Executives with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
The program has been implemented on the Medical Center's sixth floor medical/surgical unit and has had a positive impact on the nurses and patients, Becky Pomrenke, registered nurse and clinical nurse leader, said.
"The staff-based innovations implemented on this TCAB unit have included hourly rounding, bedside reporting, use of color-coded cards to indicate the location of the patient chart, and the development of a standardized vital sign sheet for the nursing assistants," Pomrenke said in the article. "These innovations have come from all levels of our staff. Some of the most successful ideas have come from the unit ward clerks and nursing assistants."
A primary reason for the success of the TCAB initiative at USA Medical Center is that in addition to staff support, the program has the support of hospital administration giving staff the power to implement change.
"We really did not have a good process where ideas could be explored and feedback given with actual data on why an idea worked or did not work," Beth Anderson, USA Medical Center administrator, said. "So we put things in place to help people do their jobs."
Other positives include a decrease in nursing turnover on the unit where TCAB was implemented, which has saved thousands of dollars. "Now we know that TCAB works, we can apply it throughout the Medical Center," Anderson said.
Research has shown that the more time a nurse spends at the bedside, the better the patient outcome. This includes decreased length of stay, less medication errors, improved patient/family education, improved customer satisfaction and improved staff satisfaction.
An important part of the program is improving the work environment and satisfaction of the nursing staff. TCAB encourages involvement of the nursing staff to identify and initiate changes.
The USA College of Nursing is an active partner with USA Medical Center in the study. Dr. Linda Roussel, USA College of Nursing professor, wrote the hospital's grant application.
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Date last changed: November 11, 2008 3:16 PM