AUSTIN, Texas—The University of Texas at Austin School of Nursing is among 14 schools of nursing nationwide chosen to participate in “Transforming Care at the Bedside,” an initiative to improve the quality of hospital-based patient care at the front lines.
Sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in conjunction with the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, the program links nursing schools with major regional hospitals. The School of Nursing will partner with Seton Healthcare Network (Seton Hospital Northwest).
The partnerships will help future nurses learn how to identify opportunities for quality improvements that could enhance patient care. Nursing schools will work with their partner hospital teams to identify where changed is needed, recommend and test potential solutions and determine if the innovations should be implemented.
“The University of Texas at Austin School of Nursing highly values opportunities for our students to work in clinical environments where nursing is leading the way to improve patient care,” said Dean Dolores Sands. “The new project will be an interesting lesson in making positive changes in health care.”
The program will provide a vital link between the classroom and the medical-surgical units in hospitals by helping nursing students understand how the time they spend working directly with patients affects the quality of care.
“As the largest group of health professionals providing direct care to patients, nurses are in a unique position to affect the quality of care a patient receives in a hospital,” said Dr. Sue Hassmiller, senior program officer at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
“This initiative engages nursing students in understanding how small changes in frontline procedures can dramatically affect quality of care, and empower them to take an active role in designing improvements throughout their careers.”
Other nursing schools selected for the program are in California, Illinois, New York, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Florida, South Dakota and Texas, including The University of Texas School of Nursing in Houston, which will partner with The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center.
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in Princeton, N.J., is the country’s largest philanthropy devoted exclusively to improving health and health care. The Boston-based Institute for Healthcare Improvement is a not-for-profit organization for improvement of health care throughout the world.