Professional accountability is a critical aspect of the nursing field, serving as a driving factor for improving patient outcomes. This paper will summarize and analyze an article by Sherman and Cohn (2019) on nursing accountability. The information taken from the content of this article will be used to discuss how it will impact personal future nursing practice.
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Assigned Article Summary
In the high-stress environments and current care structure, nurses might lack the feeling of ownership for patient outcomes. However, in the modern aspect of healthcare reimbursement, individual and systemic quality outcomes are crucial. Hence, the aspect of professional accountability comes in. Many nurses see a method of control and compliance as part of the nursing duty to follow policies and procedures, demonstrating a commitment to implementing evidence into practice.
Nurses are supposed to commit to lifelong learning and development. Furthermore, as part of the ANA Code of Ethics, nurses should be accountable and responsible for the quality of practice individually and working as a team. Therefore, it is important to implement and follow accountability safeguards since all actions have profound impacts on patients (Sherman & Cohn, 2019).
Nurses work in teams, individual variation from practice is not acceptable. Clinical decisions are made in accordance with the guidelines as part of the professional team effort to provide care. It is an ethical responsibility to follow policies and apply evidence into practice. As part of creating a culture of accountability, nursing leaders may criticize those who do not follow the rules. However, leaders are exhausted to maintain this culture continuously.
Thus, an aspect of ownership should be developed. Then nurses feel responsible for their actions and strive to fulfill certain roles and objectives. This feeling arrives when a person is fully engaged at work and becomes aware of the core nurse values as well as the organization’s values (Sherman & Cohn, 2019).
Impact of Assigned Article Content on Future Practice
Similar to the nurse in the article, many healthcare professionals do not actively consider the aspect of accountability. This is partially due to a certain culture and status quo in the workplace as well as a lack of awareness.
After reading the article, I have a greater understanding of the nuances and depth of nursing accountability in terms of systemic practice and patient outcomes. The information in this article provides me with greater awareness regarding the implementation of evidence-based practice and its interrelation with nursing ethics and responsibilities. Therefore, in my own practice, I will seek to be more adaptable to change and embrace new methods supported by scientific research that will improve practice and patient outcomes. I will also attempt to advocate and promote evidence-based practice in the workplace to create a culture of ownership among nurses and benefit from a healthcare system that always seeks to improve.
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Professional nursing accountability is an aspect of nurses’ duty and mindset which ensures that the health professional is working within the scope of practice, complies with professional standards, and uses evidence-based practice in patient care, including keeping up to date on the latest procedures and policies. This is a critical aspect in order to maintain a high quality of care and shared responsibility on the care team, leading to improvements. Each nurse should value their role and accountability in the process to protect the integrity and ensure optimal patient outcomes.
Sherman, R. O., & Cohn, T. M. (2019). Promoting professional accountability and ownership: Nursing leaders set the tone for a culture of professional responsibility. American Nurse Today, 14(2), 24-26.