Nurse-led clinic improves quality of life for patients with POTS
Pediatric patients with Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS) are limited in everyday life due to chronic, debilitating, and persistent symptoms. Lurie Children’s POTS Program, led by Jillian Myers, MSN, APRN, CPNP-PC and Catherine Moffo, BSN, RN, CPN, offers an innovative, valuable resource for patients, who often find it difficult to manage their symptoms. “The program we have developed is comprehensive and addresses each patient’s unique needs with the overall goal of improving their quality of life,” said Myers. During the pandemic, Myers and Moffo recognized an opportunity to evolve and meet patients where they were more comfortable—at home. They pivoted to telemedicine visits and continue to utilize telemedicine to increase access to care and accommodate patients’ needs. “Exercise is a critical piece to managing POTS so along with Brittany Holst, Clinical Exercise Physiologist, we created a sustainable 12-month, home-based exercise program. Holst performs an in-depth consultation and provides an individualized exercise prescription for every patient. Monthly follow-up visits via telemedicine allow us to track progress and adjust the exercise prescription as patients advance in treatment. The program now treats over 700 patients and is an established leader in POTS management in the Chicago region,” said Myers.
Fostering an environment of inclusion
Lurie Children’s Department of Nursing is committed to an environment in which every person feels they belong. Barbara Nash, MSN, RN, NE-BC and Kimberly Stanford, MSN, APRN, CRNA, have launched a new Empowerment Resource Group (ERG) called Our Voice to bring together and support Lurie Children’s community of Black nurses and allies. “ERGs are voluntary, employee-led groups focused on empowering a dimension of one’s identity. By creating awareness around issues that Black nurses face, we hope to foster an environment of inclusion that strengthens our professional practice and improves patient outcomes,” Nash says.
Our Voice plans to work alongside Nursing Administration, Clinical and Organizational Development, Talent Acquisition, and the President’s Council on Equity Diversity & Inclusion on the mission to promote community and empowerment through representation and education, while providing a safe and supportive space for Black nurses. In the short term, Our Voice envisions offering mentorship to newly recruited Black nurses, developing an assessment to identify needs of Black nurses and collaborating with a community partner to host an event in line with a community need. Aligned with Lurie Children’s organizational values, Our Voice hopes to promote employee health and wellbeing, and foster an environment of joy in clinical practice while further developing and retaining an engaged work force.
Prioritizing reward, recognition and retention of nurses
At a time when being a nurse is more challenging than ever, the Reward, Recognition and Retention (RRR) Committee knows how impactful recognizing colleagues can be. Understanding it is often the day-to-day recognition of gratitude and support that is most meaningful, the RRR committee, in collaboration with the Founders’ Board, ACE Hardware, and Senior Leadership, rolled out the Nursing Joy Cart as a way to say, “Thank you. We see you. We see your dedication and hard work and we are right there with you.” Throughout the last two years, the RRR committee has continued the Nurse Exemplar and Daisy Award programs recognizing a total of 34 nurses. “So many of the nominations for our nursing awards come from patients and families and that reinforces why we do this work,” said Bridget Byrne, BSN, RN, CPN, CCU and Chair, Reward, Recognition and Retention Committee.
Nurses promoted using ASCEND and PAM clinical ladders
Promoting Professional Advancement
Within the last two years, nurses and advanced practice providers (APP) have developed two models for their respective career advancement. These models for advancement allow nurses and APPs to continue to grow in careers as they stay engaged in clinical care. The Professional Advancement Model (PAM) was recently introduced to serve as a motivational tool for personal and professional growth by developing and promoting a professional, evidenced-based collaborative practice environment. This model recognizes the extraordinary APPs who contribute to the best possible outcomes for our patients. Achieving Success in Clinical Excellence and Nursing Development (ASCEND) considers what frontline nurses do day-to-day as well as what they accomplish above and beyond their duties such as lead committees, participate in clinical care guidelines, advocate for patients, present at conferences or conduct research. In the past two years, over 200 nurses have been promoted using the ASCEND and PAM clinical ladder programs. “It is important to grow our careers as we stay at the bedside. This clinical ladder provides our nurses, who want to stay at the bedside and continue hands-on care, a way to advance professionally,” said Emma Gersch, DNP, RN, CPN, Chair Nursing Professional Governance Board.