Nursing

Inside scoop from our experts: Give nurses tips to overcome physician barriers

HCPro's Weekly Update on the ANCC Magnet Recognition Program®*, October 21, 2008

This week, a reader asks what best practices can help nurses overcome barriers with physicians. Read the response below from our advisor, Diana Swihart, PhD, DMin, MSN, CS, APR, RN-BC, director for the ANCC Magnet Recognition Program® at Bay Pines (FL) VA Healthcare System.

Q: What best practices can help nurses overcome barriers with physicians?

A: Nurse-physician collaboration is essential to safe, efficient, and positive patient care outcomes. And, collaboration requires open dialogue among team members through participation in patient care management, performance improvement activities, direct communication, and professional partnerships.

To help nurses overcome barriers with physicians, they need to:

  • Round with physicians when possible
  • Be specific and state the offending behavior and how it affected them
  • Ask a manger for help if they are unable to overcome the barrier with the physician
  • Always have the patient’s chart, recent vital signs, and the latest labs in hand before calling a physician
  • Never begin a phone call to a physician with an apology
  • Role play difficult situations with their manager
  • Be direct, use good eye contact, and take emotional conversations off the floor
  • Take the time to thank and acknowledge physicians with whom they have a good working relationship

Editor’s note: Do you have a question for our experts? If you'd like us to consider your query for publication, please send it to associate editor Cameran Erny at cerny@hcpro.com.

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