UK HealthCare’s nursing program regains ‘magnet’ status

The University of Kentucky medical center has regained magnet status, which is the highest institutional honor for nursing care, after four years without it, according to a UK news release.

The honor comes from the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Magnet Recognition Program. The award is based on both written evaluations and on-site visits and must be applied for every four years, according to the release. Fewer than 7 percent of health-care organizations have the designation.

UK first received the award in 2001, then lost it in 2011, when the ANCC restructured the criteria from process-based to outcomes-based, according to the release. These changes prompted the program to restructure itself.

“From a nursing practice perspective, we used the loss of magnet as a call to action for us to really focus on quality outcomes, patient experience and staff experience,” UK HealthCare chief nursing executive Colleen Swartz, said in the release. “The end goal for us was superb clinical care; magnet status is a byproduct of that goal and we should embrace it as such.”

“Magnet recognition is a mindset and an approach in patient-centered care,” Swartz said. “Our team has been extremely dedicated, focused and committed in achieving this goal, and it shows in every interaction we have with patients and their families.”

UK HealthCare has 4,473 nursing services employees including 2,006 full-time registered nurses.

“Our nursing staff have worked very hard to achieve this important distinction and have been committed to this goal and truly deserve this magnet recognition,” said Dr. Michael Karpf, UK executive vice president for health affairs.

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