Structural Empowerment

We support shared governance and a decision-making structure that is bi-directional and horizontal between nurses and leadership. We recognize nurses for their contributions and positive effects on individual patients, families and the community.

Structural Empowerment at Work: Team Updates

Clinical Nurse Advancement System (CNAS):  In 2014, 28 RNs advanced in this program, which supports professional growth and rewards nursing clinical expertise in areas such as:

  • Participation in decision-making
  • Nurse Management advancement process education
  • Collaboration with People Resources to validate education and certification
  • CNAS portal website education

Nurse Council: This group provided significant input on the Pharmacy’s initiative to standardize medication times. The Council also made the discharge process more efficient by educating our teams on transitions in care.

Magnet Unit Champions: These exemplary nurses encourage and support nursing professional development, certification, community activities and outreach efforts, including:

  • Funding and coordinating the DAISY award
  • Magnet re-designation
  • Producing Magnet Cum Laude, a nursing newsletter to keep the team up-to-date on nursing accomplishments and activities at Rochester General Hospital
  • Holding food drives for FoodLink and animal shelters
  • Arranging volunteer activities for Rochester Red Wings home games

Clinical Informatics: The group is made up of nurses, experts from ancillary departments and the Care Connect Build Team. With strong clinical and technical skills, they identify and deliver improvements to our Electronic Medical Record (EMR) documentation.

Nurses Improving Care for Health System Elders (NICHE): This organization is the national leader in helping hospitals improve the care of older adults. In 2005, Rochester General Hospital became the area’s first NICHE-designated hospital. We use the NICHE Geriatric Resource Nurse model of care as the foundation of our program with the goal to build, sustain and improve our geriatric nursing expertise, competencies and certification. NICHE has provided vision and resources to help us improve our geriatric care and outcomes.

Nurses in Non-Traditional Roles

Care Connect Team

The system-wide team supporting Care Connect, our EMR system, includes nurses divided into two groups: analysts who build and design projects requested by clinical staff, and staff who provide education and continued support to clinical teams once the project is implemented.

To transition to these specialized roles, our nurses traveled to Epic (our software supplier) for classes and certification in the different clinical applications. The Care Connect team combines clinical knowledge with computer programming skills to create designs that accommodate our provider and clinician workflows.

Leaving the bedside was a very difficult decision for all of us, as our patients are the reason we went into nursing. Our group has over 200 years of combined clinical experience in various areas of the patient care spectrum, including our Operating Room, Emergency Department, Stroke and Acute Rehab Units, Labor and Delivery, Critical Care, GI Endoscopy, IV/PICC team, Orthopedics and Vascular Surgery, as well as General Medicine and Outpatient Services.

We take pride developing e-records that help clinicians enhance safety and take quality care of their patients. This way, we are still directly affecting our patients’ safety and well-being.

Patient Safety Specialists – Ann Freer, RN, BSN and Natalie Passino, BSN, RN

As Patient Safety Specialists, we plan, implement, direct and evaluate patient safety improvement programs throughout the health system. We serve as direct resources to departments, working with teams to ensure they achieve the highest possible levels of safety, quality, performance and innovation. We work with all team members within the health system, from Environmental Services personnel, dietary services, frontline caregivers and IT consultants all the way up to our Senior Executive team.

Our clinical experience and knowledge, as well as team-building and leadership skills help us inspire others to be passionate about patient safety. Through our on-boarding sessions and work with CUSP teams across the health system, we educate team members on the science of safety and help them see how everyone plays a role in patient safety. We also facilitate and manage projects including the Culture of Safety survey, Daily Safety Check, Patient Safety Champions and more.

We both miss direct contact with patients we experienced in our previous roles working in critical care and the Emergency Department. Our intent for becoming nurses was to help others when they were in need, and although it may not be as obvious that we’ve made an impact on patients’ lives as often as it would in our clinical roles, our work still directly impacts patients in positive ways.

Career opportunities