It's the time of year when many who work in teaching hospitals are welcoming new medical students and interns into their organizations. Due to the inexperience and lack of clinical knowledge, July has been associated with poorer patient quality outcomes compared to other months. Experienced registered nurses, nurse managers, and advanced practice nurses can be more proactive during this time to reduce their own stress and provide support to their medical colleagues. For instance, if your unit has a set of protocols, provide them to the medical students and first year residents. Don't expect that someone else is going to do it. You may want to take a step further and schedule a unit orientation. You may need to coordinate this with the director of the graduate medical education; however, this could prove to be very helpful and appreciated. Lastly, many facilities are establishing inter-disciplinary rounds. This can be a great communication tool, it can facilitate learning, and it can improve patient outcomes.
By Karen Innocent, MS, RN, CRNP, ANP-BC, CMSRN