Patient-Centeredness & the Persistent Fax Machine

Patient-centered care is one of the six factors of quality in healthcare. Yet, there are many opportunities for improved patient-centered care.

To anyone that has had to fill out a form or receive a form from a healthcare provider or practice, there is a great likelihood of being told to ‘fax it back’.

Yet, how many have access to a fax machine at home?

Next, you are working to find a way to get the information back to or from the healthcare facility or organization that is not through a fax machine.

Knowing most do not have a fax machine, and encountering this issue, this is one example of an opportunity to improve patient-centered care.

In the bigger picture, healthcare has opportunities to explore the healthcare experience through the eyes of patients and unveil the blind spots to truly address patient-centeredness.

This is just one example but there are many others.

The article here provides several factors that contribute to the persistent challenge however, at some point, we will not be using fax machines….

In the meantime, one area of impact is on quality through that patient experience.


~ Dr. Kelley

PhD versus DNP: Which one should you choose?

Are you deciding upon a doctoral degree in nursing? There are two primary choices: a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) and a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP). Both degrees are supported by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) and represent terminal degrees in the field of Nursing. However, there are differences between the two degree programs that prospective students should be aware of before selecting one or the other.

In this linked video, I compare the PhD and DNP in the field of Nursing. I look forward to hearing your thoughts.

DNP versus PhD: Which one should you choose?



‘If it wasn’t documented, it wasn’t done.’

  • If you are a nurse or health care professional, the phrase, “if it wasn’t documented, it wasn’t done”, is something you have likely heard, said, and/or thought during one of your shifts. For those that aren’t familiar with this phrase, it means that if there isn’t a record of the care you delivered in the patient’s chart, (by way of your documentation), the activity was not done. While this makes sense at face value, when placed in the context of patient care delivery, this statement has more extensive implications on documentation since health care organizations have transitioned from paper based records to electronic health records.


When on paper based records, nurses documented on the patient’s flowsheet, progress note, and care plans. The paper based records offered more freedom to potentially ‘go outside of the lines’.  The boundaries were flexible but the paper record also left opportunities for unintended omissions. As the nation moved to electronic health records (EHRs) over the last several decades, we have fewer flexible boundaries.  Additionally, nurses have more documentation options. Often, there are too many documentation options for the newer nurse who is concerned about a complete patient record, or the nurse who is terrified to be the one who didn’t chart his or her work.  Thus, instead of unintended omissions, we now run the risk of having too many documented data elements that make it difficult to differentiate the essential from non-essential information.

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A School Nurse & Off Duty Nurse Make a Difference

This morning I’ll share two stories that have been in the news and continue to be in the theme of this weeks stories. I’ve provided the video stories as well as the associated media links.

The first is of a school nurse who noticed a young boy’s coloring seemed out of the ordinary.


The second is of a pediatric nurse who was at a gymnastics event and saw a man was in trouble and gave him CPR.


There are countless stories similar to the ones I’ve depicted below. As a nurse you never know when your knowledge and skills will be called upon for someone else. Later today, I’ll be sharing the last post for the week for Nurses Week! I hope you’ve enjoyed the stories thus far.




When nursing care, intuition, and technology work together.

Today I’ll share some thoughts on one of my own experiences as a nurse on the lives of others. I’ll admit, I’ve not been in the position of having a patient in critical condition that needs life saving measures during my shift. However, there have been several instances over the course of my career where I’ve been able to proactively identify events that could have led patients or people down a less optimal pathway for their health.

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I am a nurse (not ‘just’ a nurse).

Today I’d like to share a poem by Suzanne Gordon entitled ‘Just a Nurse’. Sometimes we (nurses) will hear this comment, ‘just a nurse’ over the course of our nursing careers. I know I’ve heard it and it has never felt great. When I have heard it, I tend to think about all the responsibilities I have over the course of the day that I’d like to share to that person in an effort to educate him or her on how essential the nursing role is to health care delivery. These responsibilities are with the intent to improve the health of others and/or prevent any possible harm.



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