Nursing Practice and Quality Improvement
Based on accumulated knowledge, skills and experience, nurse roles and responsibilities are directed towards achievement of positive patient care outcomes as the principal yardstick of quality healthcare. As such, quality in healthcare can be measured in terms of positive healthcare outcomes, in relation to products and services provided, with Rekleiti et al. (2012) affirming that quality improvement, especially with regards to patient safety, enhances healthcare provision. Patient safety, effectiveness and efficiency, patient-centeredness, healthy lives, timeliness and equity highlight various dimensions of quality which counter or prevent potential problems like medical errors and malpractice claims. Nursing Practice and Quality Improvement
For instance, there was an issue involving a nurse who provided the wrong medication to a patient and ended up almost killing him even though the prescription record indicated that those were the specified drugs. Essentially, the prescription record belonged to an adjoining patient with seemingly similar patient history where the records had been switched. Even though the nurse should have ensured that the right patient was taken care of by first calling out his name, the error implicated the establishment’s practices and processes especially since many nurses were under stress of long working hours. As a Doctor of Nursing Practice-prepared nurse, the quality improvement initiatives for use in the improvement of the patient-safety situation would involve enhancement of relevant patient care structures and processes especially by adopting electronic health records, among others. Nursing Practice and Quality Improvement
Structure, outcomes and processes are identified by Varkey & ACMQ (2010) as the three major types of quality measures that can be used to assess the quality of healthcare which means potential interventions should also be directed in consideration to these measures.
As such, more training for nurses especially in treatment provision, with regards to providing timely and effective care would be part of quality improvement initiatives implemented for improvement of the patient-safety situation. Structurally, adoption of electronic health records will also help reduce potential errors while encouraging nursing staff to remain vigilant in their work especially since the problem arose as human error. Vincent et al. (2010) affirm the potential of DNP-prepared nurses in enhancing nursing practice by utilizing evidence-based interventions pivotal to quality improvement in nursing situations of all kinds. Nursing Practice and Quality Improvement