Nursing Practice Standards 1-6:
Standard 1 Assessment: Assessing my patients is usually the first thing I do. This helps me collect both objective and subjective data on my patient’s health situation. Sometimes I do a focused assessment depending on the issue. An example was when I cared for a patient with pneumonia. I did a focused assessment by auscultating the patient’s lungs to monitor the lungs sounds and I did her vital signs too. Another example of an assessment was when I found a resident on the floor. I had to first assess her breathing, level of consciousness, alertness, and vital signs.
Standard 2 Diagnosis: The analysis of the assessment obtained gives rise to a nursing diagnosis. For example, after assessing the patient’s alertness and level of consciousness of the patient that fell, the patient was at risk for fall-related to hypoglycemia as evidenced by dizziness. Another example of diagnosis was with a chemo patient receiving chemotherapy. The patient was exhausted and finding it difficult to cope with activities of daily living. After the assessment, a nursing diagnosis for activity intolerance was identified.
Standard 3 Outcome Identification: When a diagnosis is made, the expected outcome for the patient should be identified. For my patient who fell due to dizziness from hypoglycemia, the expected outcome will be a normal blood glucose level and no falls. Another example is identifying that the chemo patient will participate in activities of daily living without getting exhausted.
Standard 4 Planning: In planning, once the outcomes are identified, a plan on how to achieve them is made. For example, For my patient whose identified outcomes are to maintain normal blood sugar and no falls, a plan was made to monitor the blood sugar through finger sticks before every meal for a period of time. For the fall risk, a plan to implement fall precautions was made. Another example for the chemo patient was the plan for her to have assistance during her ADL’s and plan to re-enforce the teaching on the use of call bell when needed.
Standard 5 Implementation: The plan made for the patient under standard 4 was implemented. The interventions were carried out. Blood glucose monitoring was done and fall precautions were implemented for the period of time it was needed. Another example for the patient on chemotherapy was that assistance was provided when needed and to help with ADL’s
Standard 6 Evaluation: This standard emphasizes reviewing the outcome. The essence is to know if the identified outcome was achieved via the interventions or not. If they weren’t, then why? Any setbacks? For those patients, the plan made for them in standard 4 was effective in achieving their identified outcome during the plan period. The evaluations were done by observing, interacting with the patient, and reviewing charted information.
Professional Performance Standards 7-17:
Standard 7 Ethics: This includes the moral principle that is guiding an individual. In nursing, ethics is also a major aspect of the profession. Abiding by the professional code of ethics, conduct, and principle is important in nursing. Patients are respected and treated with kindness. The cultural values of patients are also respected without judgments. Ethics also helps me act professionally as an advocate for my patients, also knowing what is right and wrong is vital in delivering quality patient care.
Standard 8 Culturally Congruent Practice: Registered nurses should be open to care for all individuals regardless of their cultural beliefs and norms. Nurses should be non-judgmental but respect the values and beliefs of patients. An example is when a patient is dying, there could be some religious rites the patient and family could want to observe. Registered nurses should respect it when delivering care regardless of what the nurse’s beliefs are.
Standard 9 Communication & Standard 10 Collaboration: Standards 9 &10 oftentimes work together. Effective communication is needed by registered nurses when collaborating with other professional team members on a patient’s care. Communication has to be clear, specific, and sometimes with feedback. An example was when a care partner was delegated to do vital signs for specific patients and report back on their vital sign’s values. Also, that was a collaborative effort to monitor the blood pressure of those patients.
Standard 11 Leadership: Nurses should possess some leadership qualities and skills. This is because leadership is part of the nursing profession. An example is the position of a charge nurse who is making sure team members are completing their assigned duties and reporting back on the assignment. Also, a leader should be prompt in resolving issues that arise concerning patient care.
Standard 12 Education: Education helps nurses to acquire more knowledge and skill in their profession. This helps nurses to be more equipped and competent in delivering quality care to patients. Examples of avenues to acquire knowledge besides readings include training, seminars, continuous education program, and the BS program.
Standard 13 Evidence-based Practice and Research: This is important because it enables nurses to aim at the most effective care, based on evidence. Due to the changing medical situations and technology, researchers contribute to ensuring that evidence-based information is available for use to achieve positive patient outcomes.
Standard 14 Quality of Practice: This is a major responsibility of nurses. Nurses should provide quality nursing. Acquiring knowledge and skills enable nurses to practice competently within their scope of practice delivering quality nursing care to patients. An example is the use of critical thinking judgment and skill to know when to apply a focused assessment on a patient when needed to avoid delay in care.
Standard 15 Professional Practice Evaluation: This standard allows for nurses to self-assess their nursing practice and also evaluate others. This goes a long way in determining if things are going in the right direction or whether changes and adjustments are needed.
Standard 16 Resource Utilization: The appropriate use of available resources helps in achieving efficiency and quality on the job. Resource utilization also helps alleviate certain workloads off nurses, making them focus on more critical areas. For example, with staffing, if a registered nurse has a care partner assisting with vital signs, she can go ahead for an IV insertion with another patient.
Standard 17 Environmental Health: A healthy work environment is important in achieving a positive outcome that is sustained for both patients and healthcare professionals. An example is when a working environment is safe and free from environmental hazards, nurses can provide care safely to patients.