How Barnes-Jewish Hospital Trains Nurses to Cope
This vignette in Chapter 7 explores Barnes-Jewish Hospital, which has been ranked by U.S. News and World Report as one of the best hospitals in the United States and as its top-rated hospital for St. Louis, Missouri. The 1,258-bed not-for-profit hospital is part of the BJC HealthCare chain, which serves patients in the St. Louis metropolitan area. A big part of the Barnes-Jewish staff is its more than 2,500 full-time and 800 part-time registered nurses. A registered nurse comes to Barnes-Jewish (or any other) hospital after extensive training in human health and patient care. But one of the major challenges facing a nurse is not a matter of deploying technical skills; it is how to cope with the day-in, day-out experience of witnessing patientsâ€™ suffering and sometimes death. Especially during periods when several of their patients have poor outcomes, nurses can feel worn down by the stress. They can suffer â€œcompassion fatigue,â€ experienced as sadness, despair, and reduced empathy. At worst, nursesâ€™ health suffers, and they find themselves avoiding certain patients and perhaps failing to deliver quality care when they fail to notice or correctly interpret patientâ€™s needs. A commitment to high-quality care and concern for its nursesâ€™ well-being has led Barnes-Jewish to offer training in how to cope with stress and avoid or recover from compassion fatigue. Read the vignette at the end of Chapter 7 in your text and then answer the following questions.
- Identify the training method used at Barnes-Jewish Hospital. Identify any other appropriate training methods that could have been used to address the needs of the nurses.
- State how the approach to training at Barnes-Jewish aligns with the organizationâ€™s needs.