I’m a firm believer that nurses are the key to a great patient experience. But in most organizations, we’re seeing a higher acuity level and staffing that stresses many of even the most seasoned nurses. When I talk with nurses about the value of hourly rounds, they often express that they just can’t try to fit one more thing into their days. That’s why it is often difficult to persuade nurses to see the value in hourly rounds. They can buy into the theory, but have difficulty getting past the demands of the current shift.
Last week as I was coaching nurses on the art and science of hourly rounding, I could practically see the lightbulbs going on over their heads. We were discussing the studies done on the impact of rounding. The data on decreased falls and pressure ulcers are solid. So is the improvement on the patient satisfaction scores. All of which are all important to nurses, but there’s more. When I got to the part where we shared case studies documenting a 40% decrease in call lights – I got their attention. Here’s the payoff. With a 40% reduction in the number of call lights, nurses can enjoy a little more predictability in their schedules. They also reap more enjoyment out of proactive engagement over reactive responses to lights.
Overall, nurses want to be part of a great patient experience. It gives them greater engagement and job satisfaction. But let’s be sure to answer one very important question of the nurses, “What’s in it for me?” The response is two-fold. First, you can reduce the number of call lights, creating more order in your time management. Second, it helps build a stronger connection to your patients which feeds your sense of purpose. Both things are important to job satisfaction and retention.