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Beebe Medical Center Honors Joanna Robertson with the “You Make a Difference” Award

January 30, 2012 Joanna Robertson, RN, a nurse on the third floor medical-surgical unit at Beebe Medical Center, has been honored with the You make a Difference Award for January 2012. Joanna has been recognized for her tireless work toward improving patient care by leading an effort to institute the evidence-based practice Bedside Reporting. The practice is a patient-centered initiative that allows the patient to participate in the nurses' routine shift-change reporting process. Research is showing that the practice improves communication between nurses and caregivers, as well as between the patients and their nurses and physicians. Traditionally, nurses do not meet in patient rooms when they discuss patients.

Joanna Robertson

Joanna Robertson, RN, Beebe medical-surgical unit Nurse, has been honored with the You make a Difference Award for January 2012.

Last summer, in her new role as a nurse in the unit, Robertson suggested that the traditional shift reporting between nurses be changed. She had learned about bedside reporting while at nursing school and that there were positive aspects to it in regards to improving patient care. Robertson approached Margaret Porter, RN, MSN, the nurse manager of the unit, and asked if some nurses on the unit could pilot the practice. Knowing this was a significant change in nursing practice, Porter encouraged Robertson to make this a staff nurse driven initiative and to organize and lead the pilot. Robertson prepared education information for the core group of eight nurses and herself. For three months beginning in October 2011, she led meetings and classes, instructing staff on the change. During the month of December, classes were held to continue education for all nurses in the unit. Nurses from the Orthopaedic unit also joined in so they could begin the process this winter. During the trial period, both patients and their families began commenting on much they enjoyed that added information. Then, Beebe Medical Center learned that the results of the Press Ganey Satisfaction patient surveys had markedly improved since October. The program is now being used throughout the medical-surgical unit on the third floor, and education is beginning so this process can go hospitalwide. Physicians also will be invited to participate. "Joanna has given an enormous about of time and effort toward the success of this initiative," says Paul Minnick, RN, MSN, NEA-BC, Vice President of Patient Care Services of Beebe Medical Center. She has truly made a difference to the quality of care we give to our patients. The improvement in the handover communication from one caregiver to another also has improved patient safety. Beebe Medical Center's You Make a Difference (YMAD) employee recognition program, which was established in 2002, gives employees the opportunity to recognize their colleagues for outstanding service. The program is similar to an employee of the month program, but 18 employees can be selected annually. Each nomination, submitted by fellow employees or management, must meet specific criteria, and is evaluated by the YMAD committee. Winners are announced in a surprise ceremony in which the committee visits the winner in his or her department and presents the award. Employees selected for the award receive: ᄃParking space with sign/plaque for a month ᄃ$100 check ᄃLetter of congratulations and personal visit from Jeffrey Fried, Beebe president and CEO ᄃPhoto for wall plaque on hall outside of cafeteria ᄃSpecial pin for badge ᄃLetter to team member's director and department recognition Beebe Medical Center is a not-for-profit community medical center with a charitable mission to encourage healthy living, prevent illness, and restore optimal health with the people residing, working, or visiting in the communities we serve. For more information, please visit us online at