Preparing Nurses to Lead Transformative Change in Health Care

Wednesday, 24 July 2013: 10:30 AM

Dawn M. Bazarko, DNP, MPH, RN
Corporate, UnitedHealth Group, Minnetonka, MN

Learning Objective 1: Discuss how nurse-led innovations led to the creation of a work environment where nurses grow and thrive.

Learning Objective 2: Explain ways to prepare nurses to serve in broader leadership roles in health care.

The Center for Nursing Advancement (CfNA) started in 2008 focusing on reducing voluntary nurse turnover and lowering turnover costs. Soon, it was learned that to achieve these goals, the focus needed to be on culture and changing work practices and the work environment. The new aim was to establish a workplace of choice, where nurses were eager to remain with the company and experience a long and stimulating career.

Over the past several years, the CfNA has encompassed a full spectrum of robust evidence-based personal, professional and leadership development programs that contribute to a core mission of addressing the health and well-being of company nurses, “growing” nurse leaders at every level, and energizing our nurses for expanding roles in solving the health care problems of today and tomorrow.

 Since inception, the CfNA has increased nurse engagement scores by 11% (now higher than non- nurses) and decreased voluntary turnover rates by more than 5%.  In addition, targeted programs to reduce stress have lowered stress, burnout, and improved the health and well-being of nurses, as measured on a number of indicators. CfNA-sponsored personal and professional development programs are producing a significant impact on nurse career advancement, culminating in a 21% promotion rate, which is much higher than the general nurse and non-nurse population.

 This talk focuses on a novel workplace innovation aimed at creating a work environment that is best practice; a place where investment in nurses helps to build capacity to contribute in new and expanded ways. Highlights of feature programs will illustrate how unmet needs were addressed to promote the personal and professional growth of company nurses so they are optimally positioned to assume greater leadership roles in health care. A key component of this talk is the focus on measurement, quantifying impact and articulating the value of nursing.