Securing Magnet Recognition
How CHRISTUS Hospital used HealthStream reports, education, and authoring as key components in their Journey to Nursing Excellence™
By Ruthie Robinson, RN, PhD, CEN, FAEN, Director Center for Nursing Innovation and Michelle Hammerly, MS, Education Director, CHRISTUS Hospital - St. Elizabeth & St. Mary
- Achieved Magnet Accreditation on December 14, 2007
- Delivered critical documentation required by Magnet by using HealthStream's advanced reporting capabilities
- Delivered education the way 87% of learners said they wanted it - online
- Strengthened the strategic relationship between Christus's education department and its Magnet office
- Made access to education equally available, regardless of shift or location
- Gained greater ability to track training compliance at unit-specific levels
- Used limited training funds far more effectively
Christus Hospital St. Elizabeth & St. Mary, of Beaumont and Port Arthur, Texas, is the largest hospital between Houston and Baton Rouge. At the insistence and with the support of our Chief Nurse Executive, we made the commitment to achieving Magnet Recognition and realizing its benefits for our patients, our community, and our hospital.
The Magnet Recognition Program® of the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) formally acknowledges healthcare organizations that epitomize nursing excellence. Magnet hospitals are nurse-friendly environments that often experience fewer retention and recruitment challenges and have consistently proven to provide the highest quality care. On the organizational side, Magnet facilities experience positive financial benefits, such as direct cost savings, as well as competitive advantage in terms of attracting staff and scoring well on patient and family satisfaction surveys. Attaining this recognition requires a healthcare facility to document its compliance with all features of the highest levels of nursing excellence. In some cases this requires raising and creating standards that may not have existed before.
In the midst of our lengthy accreditation process, we encountered numerous challenges that could easily have served to derail the Magnet certification effort. Our greatest challenge was Hurricane Rita, which slammed into Texas’s Eastern Gulf Coast in September 2005, causing major destruction and displacement. Organizational developments also put our efforts at risk. Well into the process, the Christus hospitals in Beaumont and neighboring Port Arthur were merged into a single entity, doubling the size of the nursing operation that had to be included in our Magnet preparations. In addition, a major information management system implementation at Christus added additional complexity to the process, which we nevertheless successfully completed in June 2007. HealthStream worked closely with us and was instrumental as well in this system conversion.
"HealthStream is perfect for what Magnet requires for documentation." - Ruthie Robinson, RN, PhD, CEN, FAEN, Director Center for Nursing Innovation
"I don't see how an organization can get all the things done as part of Magnet Accreditation without a partner like HealthStream." - Michelle Hammerly, MS, Education Director
We already had a significant relationship with HealthStream when the Magnet Office and Education Department began looking for ways to facilitate the approach to meeting all requirements of accreditation. Realizing that HealthStream had mapped its capabilities and offerings to the 14 Forces of Magnetism, we engaged the company on multiple levels as a vital partner to support our certification process and Journey to Nursing Excellence™.
Where applicable, we used the HealthStream Learning Center (HLC) to assign and deliver off-the-shelf online educational courses in support of Magnet requirements. Christus also created its own customized courseware using the HealthStream Authoring Center, for delivery through the HLC. For training that was instructor-led, we nevertheless assigned the courses through the HLC and had students register through HealthStream in order to track all training in one place. This process allowed us far more efficiency and helped manage attendance in training facilities, such as computer labs, where seats are limited.
Where new policies were required and had to be reviewed by large numbers of staff members, we published them, assigned them, and tracked their review through HealthStream. In all, our nursing staff completed over 100,000 education courses during the 18 months leading up to the Magnet designation survey. Most courses were completed online, and all were documented in the HLC.
Most importantly for our accreditation efforts, Christus was able to track, down to the unit level, the percentage of nurses whose training was compliant with requirements. HealthStream’s account manager worked very closely with us on an ongoing basis to deliver reports that specifically addressed Magnet requirements and tracked how we had fulfilled them.
We received formal recognition as a Magnet hospital in December 2007. Working together, the Education Department and Magnet office have formed a strong partnership through our joint effort to meet the requirements for certification. By using HealthStream as its educational partner for the Journey to Nursing Excellence™, our hospital benefited from HealthStream’s strong commitment to excellence in nursing education, evidenced in multiple relationships with professional nursing associations for educational content. Not only was HealthStream instrumental in a comprehensive effort to achieve all Magnet requirements, but it was equally committed to doing so efficiently, which is vital in an environment of limited healthcare funding. With online delivery identified as the preferred choice for training by 87% of trainees, especially for night workers, far better use was made of limited time and other resources. Finally, tracking training compliance and running the detailed reports required for Magnet designation was facilitated by HealthStream’s extensive reporting capabilities.
To learn how HealthStream was used, download the story.