Coast Plaza Debuts Team Nursing

A new strategy to address hospital staffing shortages and also add patient care capacity is rolling out at Coast Plaza Hospital.

Coast Plaza Chief Nursing Officer Downapha Britton explained that the model involves licensed and unlicensed nursing staff assigned to work together. The team members – including a charge nurse with oversight of a team leader RN, LVNs and unlicensed personnel – share responsibilities for providing care to a designated group of patients.

“Evidence shows that team nursing improves nursing work satisfaction resulting in higher quality and more efficient care,” Britton said.

She explained that the team model is facilitated by a reallocation of space to accommodate more patients, thereby also increasing the hospital’s capacity for patient care.

“We have opened an area that was an OR overflow room, replacing gurneys with beds,” Britton said. “We also will be moving case management staff from a first floor area to the basement, turning that space into a patient care area.”

In a phased approach, facility changes already have added eight new beds. The goal is to create capacity for a total of 60 acute care beds this spring — an increase of 13 beds from the current 47.

“The overall impact will be an increased ability to care for patients in our community who need the special care that we provide at Coast Plaza,” Britton added.