Most would say worse. And one of the many reasons is medical errors. Most Americans say the quality of care has not improved, and dissatisfaction among patients and caregivers has increased. The perceptions exist despite the efforts across the country to reduce medical errors.
The medical record is a legal document and is used to protect the patient as well as the professional practice of those in healthcare. Documentation of the care you give is proof of the care you provide. Any attorney or risk manager should be able to reconstruct the care the patient received after reviewing a chart. Charting should include assessment, intervention, and patient response. Charting should occur when a patient is transferred - before, during, and after - to another unit in the facility, or to and from another facility.
There is a shortage of registered nurses that has been going on for many years now, and that, along with increased workload, is a potential threat to the quality of patient care. Insufficient staffing is becoming commonplace throughout the United States, which raises stress levels, impacts job satisfaction, and drives nurses away from the profession. And those who stay in the profession know that these factors have a detrimental affect on the quality of patient care, the least of which is not spending enough time actually taking care of patients.
Informed Consent is still an issue on the healthcare agenda. It appears we are still not doing it properly. Consent is a process, not a form. It also continues to be a source of malpractice liability, because the legal requirements continue to lack complete clarity. And, done poorly, it contributes to a climate of public mistrust in healthcare professionals. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) periodically issues clarifications of its expectations for informed consent.
Leaders understand the purpose in their own lives and what they wish to accomplish personally and professionally. A leader must be able to express belief in the value of his or her goals. Leaders are also able to self-reflect and act on those insights. Self-awareness is a key to strong leadership.
In This Issue
Liz Di Bernardo