A Vital Gift to Saint John’s Nursing Program

February 21, 2017

Compassionate nursing care is a hallmark of Providence Saint John’s Health Center. In order to continue that legacy, it helps to have friends like The Jean Perkins Foundation. This charitable organization is a longtime and generous donor whose support helps Saint John’s nurses maintain the exceptional care they have been providing for many years.

Funded by The Perkins Foundation in 2006, the crucial conversations program trained caregivers in the “Seven Crucial Conversations in Health Care,” the result of 25 years of research. These conversations helped to promote lasting change in health care by making caregivers aware of: rules, minimizing mistakes, supporting each other, competence, teamwork, respect and the downfalls of micromanagement. “These conversations taught caregivers how to have positive interactions with their colleagues which led to more compassionate—and safer—patient care,” says Dawna Hendel, Saint John’s chief nursing officer.

The Perkins Foundation also funded the human patient simulator (HPS), which is designed to accurately resemble anatomical structure and mimic human-life functions. “We use it in our nursing department and skill labs,” says Dawna. “It is an invaluable learning tool that allows nurses to work on realistic patient-care scenarios in a safe environment.”

The Perkins Foundation is also supporting Saint John’s in the nursing Magnet Journey by funding the Magnet manager position. Magnet recognition, by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), is an important initiative in helping to maintain high-quality nursing through a systematic study of actions and their effects related to nursing care. The Magnet Journey is the process of working toward the esteemed Magnet designation, which in turn signifies the highest level of compassionate and quality care in nursing. The Magnet manager is essential in achieving this goal—which only 7 % of hospitals nationwide have attained. “We wouldn’t be able to do this without [The Perkins Foundation],” says Dawna. “We are so happy to be on the road toward this prestigious designation. It raises the bar, which is already very high at Saint John’s, to another level in terms of nursing care.”

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