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A clinical nurse leader (CNL) transitioned from one hospital that employed more than 30 CNLs to serve as the first and only CNL at a different hospital within the system. This eye-opening experience served as an amazing opportunity to highlight the potential of a CNL. Upon assessment, the first identified area of opportunity was the daily interdisciplinary rounds. Leadership identified that this process needed "outside" eyes and requested the CNL's perspective. The CNL identified the lack of standardization with the flow of the rounds, resulting in a varied report delivery daily. Using previous experience, the CNL led the process, implementing a barrier board for consistency. The interdisciplinary team involved included physicians, nurses, charge nurses, case managers, a diabetes educator, a palliative care nurse, nutrition, therapy, and others. The board provided a visualization of the barriers for everyone to address with the entire team every day. The team collaboratively focuses on the barriers, disposition plan, and COVID-19 process. Results include telemetry discontinuation, the advancement of diets, improved mobility, consult ordering, etc. As a team, the goal is to reduce length of stay through standardized processes, address barriers consistently, and enhance a safe discharge. CNLs use the skills of communication, collaboration, and coordination to help manage care across the life span and in all types of health care settings.1




1. American Association of Colleges of Nursing. Competencies and curricular expectations for clinical nurse leader education and practice. Published 2013. Accessed December 11, 2013. [Context Link]