Quick question for staff nurses: Nurse autonomy

HCPro's Weekly Update on the ANCC Magnet Recognition Program®*, January 5, 2010

One of the scariest aspects of a site visit for staff nurses is the prospect that appraisers will ask them a question they can't answer. Help nurses get over their fears by practicing responses to a variety of questions about the journey and what designation means to them. This will help nurses feel more confident that they can answer any question posed on the real site visit.

Here is this month's quick question for staff nurses:

Practice question: Are nurses in your organization empowered to practice with autonomy in their clinical and professional decisions, and if so, do you support that?

Hint: Autonomous nursing care is the hallmark of designated organizations, in which staff nurses are accountable for practice that is guided by national nursing standards and their professional expertise based on education and experience.

Example: Staff nurses play a critical role in assessing and evaluating pain control measures for their patients. Members of the interdisciplinary team need the professional assessment information from staff nurses to identify the correct analgesic and the most appropriate route, dosage, and interval to maximize pain control.

Source: Adapted from Ready, Set, Designation! HCPro's Guide for the ANCC Magnet Recognition Program®.

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