2020 has been designated the International Year of the Nurse and the Midwife by the World Health Organisation. The Year commemorates the bicentenary of the birth of Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing.
As we begin the year, Gosford Private Hospital's Director of Clinical Services, Jennifer McNamara, has shared her thoughts on the role nursing leaders play in the delivery of positive patient care.
"As nurses and midwives we are privileged to share with patients and families both the happiest and saddest times of their lives. I am proud to lead a team at Gosford Private Hospital who appreciate this privilege and whose interactions always show commitment to our mission, vision and values.
I have worked as a registered nurse at Gosford Private for 18 years. At Gosford Private our mission is to be recognised as the hospital of choice in our community by providing exceptional patient centered care.
Over the last few years we have focused on the impact of leadership on our organisational culture and in turn the impact of our strong organisational culture on our patients' experience.
Our Executive has focused on leadership, with management ensuring that our leaders engage with their teams.
We firmly believe our staff are our biggest asset and want their experience here to be as good as it can be. Our philosophy is that happy and engaged staff will provide exceptional patient care and experience.
It has always astonished me the power that reflection has on reigniting your passion for something. There is no question that having passion for your mission is the key component to being a great leader.
Growing up I never wanted to be a nurse, in fact I could barely stand the sight of blood. When I was 17 I spent a few weeks sitting with a friend in hospital as he recovered from major surgery. It wasn’t until I started to reflect on my experiences as a nurse, and trying to make the transition from manager to leader, that I realised the importance of those few weeks.
The kindness and empathy shown in the interactions between the nurses and my friend and his family had a significant impact on their hospital experience. It is interactions like these that have the greatest impact on both patient experience and clinical outcomes.
The leadership team at Gosford Private have worked hard to develop and implement the mission, vision and values of our hospital. We have a particular focus on empathy - ensuring that our leaders and our staff understand that our first response to any situation should always be an empathic one.
As a team we are passionate about making sure that our values are displayed in all interactions with staff, patients, families, doctors and the wider community."