The nurse leader's accountability in nurse fatigue: Ten tips for successful intervention

Sunday, 17 November 2013: 2:45 PM

Ann Marie T. Brooks, DNSc, RN, MBA, FAAN, FACHE, FNAP
Main Line Health System - Riddle Memorial Hospital, Newtown Square, PA

Nurse leaders are expected to represent the voice of nursing at the executive table and serve as the champion for quality and safety for patients and staff.  While there are many competing priorities for resources within any healthcare organization, the safety of patients and staff should be a top priority and driver in the decision making for senior leaders.  Nurse executives understand the challenges facing bedside nurses and other assistive personnel involved in direct patient care.  Their role requires them to be activists and experts in translating both objective and subjective data into a business plan with specific strategies to achieve organizational and department goals and priorities.  Nurse fatigue is recognized as a major issue facing nursing because of its negative impact on the quality and safety of patient care and worker satisfaction and retention.  Studies demonstrate the effect of nurse and worker fatigue on serious medical errors, workflow issues and lack of service excellence causing increased risk to patients, increased costs and increased frustration within the work environment.  While nurse leaders oftentimes acknowledge the complex and challenging role of the direct care nurse, minimal progress has been made by professional organizations or healthcare institutions to address nurse fatigue and the continual expansion of expectations placed on the bedside nurse.  This presentation will highlight some leading practices and offer practical strategies that have been developed by the partnership of beside nurses with nurse leaders and that can be used in healthcare organizations across the globe.