Methodist Hospitals has received the highest national honor for nursing care.
The health system recently earned the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Magnet status. Only 22 Indiana hospitals and 8 percent of the 6,300 U.S. hospitals have gotten the recognition.
"Magnet is all about nursing excellence, quality patient care, innovation," said Mary Jo Valentine, director of nursing professional development for Methodist.
She said the health system went through a rigorous process in applying for Magnet status. The credentialing center looks at 78 different measures in deciding whether to recognize a hospital.
"It's a consumer validation for the ultimate credential related to high quality nursing care," said Shelly Major, vice president and chief nursing officer for Methodist Hospitals. "Nursing is not the same at every hospital. You can go to one and get great nursing care. You can go to another and not. Consumers rely on this."
Major said Methodist got the honor by focusing on specific areas of care and making improvements in outcomes, working with clinical experts along the way.
For instance, to prevent falls, nurses assess patients' risk levels by examining factors like mobility. Nurses outfit at-risk patients with arm bands and yellow socks. The nurses monitor the patients frequently and activate alarms on their beds in case they get up.
To cut down on bed sores, the nurses assess patients' skin upon admission. The nurses reposition the patients often, work to prevent heel breakdown and make use of dressings.
"The sooner we can see something developing, the better we are at preventing it from getting worse," Major said.
She said nurses are also seen as leaders in the hospital system — and are given room to grow in the organization.
"We don't want nurses looking for a job. We want people looking for a career path," she said. "Our culture and our focus is on working with nursing staff to continue to develop professionally in their careers."
The Magnet honor goes to hospitals with higher patient satisfaction with nurse communication, availability of help and receipt of discharge information; lower risk of 30-day mortality and lower failure to rescue rates; higher job satisfaction among nurses; and lower nurse reports of intentions to leave their positions.
Methodist President/CEO Ray Grady stated that the recognition is "tangible evidence of our nurses’ commitment to providing the very best care to our patients, of which we are extremely proud.”