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J Prof Nurs. 2006 Sep-Oct;22(5):280-8.

Improving perceptions of patient care--a nursing education and nursing practice initiative.

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University of Texas Medical Branch School of Nursing, Galveston, TX 77555-1132, USA.


In January 2005, the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) School of Nursing and the UTMB Hospitals and Clinics launched the first phase of a project to improve perceptions of patient care on the part of nursing faculty and nursing clinicians. A finding on the UTMB annual employee satisfaction survey that nursing faculty and clinicians tended to rate quality of UTMB patient care lower than other UTMB employees provided the impetus for the initiative. When UTMB colleagues noticed the findings, various entities including human resources and the Faculty Senate called for explanations from the dean of the School of Nursing, the chief nursing officer, and the CEO for the hospitals and clinics. In the process of attempting to give reasons for the findings, each of us determined we would take definitive action to address the situation. This article describes our accomplishments for Phase 1 of the initiative. Beginning with a vision for a productive professional community characterized by a pedagogical partnership between nursing education and practice, we share the processes we followed to (1) achieve mutual understanding among task force members, (2) obtain input on perceptions from nursing colleagues, (3) identify the clinical and nursing education aspects of the perceptions, (4) reach consensus on target perceptions for Phase 2 of the project, and (5) outline the next steps for the project.

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