As a nurse, it’s your job to help others to be and stay healthy over the years. You likely love what you do because it makes you feel good and you know you’re making someone else’s life better.
You have a lot of power as a healthcare provider and control over how you function and operate in the workplace. Therefore, be someone who works to improve patient care and creates a welcoming and inviting environment for those who visit your clinic or hospital. The following tips will remind you that one person can make a difference and that all it takes is focusing on the right aspects and factors.
Further Your Education
One way to improve patient care as a nurse is to further your education in your field and specialty. For example, you may want enroll in the DNP executive leadership program so you can distinguish yourself as a nurse and focus on higher-level strategies and approaches to healthcare. The more you know the easier it’s going to be to propose certain solutions to your patients and help them to feel better fast.
Spend More Time
Another way to improve patient care as a nurse is to spend more time with your patients. Take an extra five minutes with them to get to know each individual on a personal basis. This is going to help you understand where they’re coming from and how they live their life. It may also allow you to notice other health issues they’re having so you can help them to feel their best. You want to be able to show you care and that you aren’t simply checking in and out and rushing around during your appointments.
Ask the Right Questions
Come prepared to your appointments ready to ask the right types of questions in your interactions with patients. Be sure to study the patient’s previous health history and charts in advance of your appointments. Improve patient care as a nurse by knowing what kind of information you should be discovering more about when meeting someone who needs your assistance. Try to stay on topic and dig deep into particular issues your patients are having so you can offer up the best care solutions and remedies.
What may be holding you back the most in your nursing career is you making assumptions based only on what you know. Instead, have a curious mindset and come to appointments open to hearing what your patients want to discuss and how they’re feeling. You may miss certain diagnosis or red flags if you’re quick to assume or make judgments based on your own thoughts. Assuming the patients you see are feeling a certain way or are having particular symptoms without collecting the facts may make you blind to understanding what’s truly going on with them.
Empower Your Patients Toward Self-Care
It’s okay and encouraged that you educate your patients when you’re with them. Instead of acting like you know it all you can empower them toward self-care remedies and habits. Offer up your ideas related to their health status and what you’ve learned over the years to assist them in committing to living a healthier lifestyle. Remember that once your patients leave your care they’re going to have to know how to take care of themselves, so education and creating good habits while in your presence is essential to their success.
Although you have a lot of knowledge and information to give as a nurse, you’re also a person and so are your patients. Therefore, treat them like human beings and show empathy toward what they’re going through. Put yourself in their shoes and think about how vulnerable and nervous they must be feeling when they’re experiencing health issues. Be kind and generous in your approach and interactions and offer up practical solutions that you believe will help them to feel better in the future. Be sure to explain any terminology you’re using that they may not understand and be patient with them as they try to comprehend all the information you’re throwing at them. Don’t be afraid to show compassion toward your patients and to verbally let them know you care about their health and happiness.
Focus on the Individual
You can also improve patient care as a nurse by focusing on providing individual care for each person. This will be more helpful, and you’ll be more successful in your career versus assuming everyone’s the same and there’s always one right answer to a problem. Put the human touch back in nursing by using patient’s names when you speak to them and getting to know them on an individual basis. Tailor your solutions to their specific needs and lifestyle and take the time to listen to each person’s particular health problems or dilemmas. It’s important that you focus on hearing your patient’s out about what’s going on before you automatically assume you have the answers they need right away. Offer to look further into specific issues you’re uncertain of further and get back to them at a later date.
Report Issues in Your Workplace
It’s also in your best interest to get comfortable speaking up in the workplace. You have the power to improve patient care as a nurse by reporting issues that arise in your presence or processes that aren’t working well. You have to be willing to use your voice and converse with management if you want the environment to get better for your patients. Instead of complaining or whining come prepared to offer up ideas and solutions to problems you’re witnessing or facing at your job. You may also want to consider giving surveys to your patients so that you all have a better idea of how you’re performing and can use their input to help you correct any flaws. One of the best ways to improve over time is to be willing to listen and accept advice from others so you can change for the better instead of taking what they’re saying personally.