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Is your ED unsafe? Make these changes now
Do you worry about unsafe staffing levels, a shortage of experienced nurses, a lack of trust between administration and staff, long work hours, and systems that don’t promote safety and efficiency? If so, you have new ammunition to call for dramatic changes in your ED.
A 2004 report from the Washington, DC-based Institute of Medicine, Keeping Patients Safe: Transforming the Work Environment of Nurses gives specific recommendations to avoid adverse outcomes.
"Emergency nurses have been talking for years about the issues in this report and will feel supported by these recommendations that are designed to improve the workplace," says Linda F. Yee, RN, MSN, CEN, former chair of the Emergency Nurses Association (ENA) patient safety workgroup.
The report cites compelling research that links nursing conditions with patient safety. "It is hard to argue with the evidence found in these studies," she says.
Here are key recommendations:
For more information about nursing conditions and patient safety in the ED, contact:
• Linda F. Yee, RN, MSN, CEN. E-mail: LindaFYee@aol.com.
A paper copy of the Institutes of Medicine report, "Keeping Patients Safe" costs $44.95 plus $4.50 shipping charge. To order, contact: The National Academies Press, 500 Fifth St. N.W., Lockbox 285, Washington, DC 20055. Telephone: (888) 624-8373 or (202) 334-3313. Fax: (202) 334-2451. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Web: www.nap.edu.
To order the Emergency Nurses Association’s Guidelines for Emergency Department Nurse Staffing, go to www.ena.org. Click on "Marketplace" and "The ENA Staffing Best Practices Tool and Guidelines." The cost is $500 for nonmembers or $100 for members.