Ruth Walton, RN, MS, is the nurse leader who developed and introduced this model at MWMC in Massachusetts and at MacNeal and Weiss Hospitals in Chicago, Ruth has worked in both academic and non academic health care settings and has over 15 years experience as a Chief Nurse Executive. Ruth was the CNO at MWMC for 11 years and recently transitioned to the role of Regional Chief Nursing Officer for Vanguard Health Systems in Massachusetts and Chicago. Ruth was recognized for another innovative model of care by the Association of American Operating Nurses and received a writer’s award for her project and article called “AMB-Track- Development of a Surgi-Center Model within a Major Operating Room”.
“I implemented this model to assure that there was a coherent theory based approach to care that encompassed those attributes that are the most important to the patient and to the nurse such as humanizing care delivery and team interdependence. I also wanted MWMC to be able to differentiate itself from its competitors in the area of compassionate care provision.”
“I learned so many things. Some I expected and planned for and some surprised me with their level of importance. I expected that the patients and their families would love this model and they do. They tell us over and over that they feel safe and that they love their nurse or that they were at the hospital before the model or at another hospital and they didn’t receive this type of personalized care. They tell us that they have never had such timely response to call lights or that they have never seen so many staff members in and out of their room. They tell us that they feel the staff really works together as a team.”
“I didn’t anticipate the benefits of the team based approach as much in advance as we experienced. The fact that the staff has team members to work with, to sign off to, to cover for them when they are busy has been an enormous benefit and satisfier. Staff now tend to get out on time, they leave the unit for meals, they have esprit d’corp that they didn’t have before. The benefits to the new grad are significant. They don’t fall off a cliff after orientation when their preceptor is taken away. Now they transition to the model and work with an experienced RN. They are spared the anxiety of trying to figure out who to ask for help when they are uncertain or when they need support. It truly is a wonderful continuing transition to clinical practice. The other benefit I observe is how well managed the units seem to be. There is less scurrying around, less noise, fewer call light bells as there is more planning and less crisis management.”