Cerebral salt wasting: An overlooked cause of hyponatremia
Like many clinicians, you might automatically suspect the syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone (SIADH) in a patient who has hyponatremia. In SIADH, hypo-natremia can lead to an impaired leve...
Remedying role confusion: Differentiating RN and LPN roles
In today’s constantly changing healthcare system, a key challenge is to better define, differentiate, and demarcate the roles of the registered nurse (RN) and licensed practical nurse (LPN). For years...
Finance: It's not a dirty word
Your chief nursing officer stops you in the hall. To your surprise, she asks, “Jen, why don’t you apply for that charge nurse position that’s opening up on your unit? I’ve hear...
Demystifying ventricular arrhythmias
Ventricular arrhythmias—the mere words may sound scary, even to a nurse. After all, these arrhythmias are a leading cause of sudden cardiac death. This article demystifies ventricular arrhythmias to h...
Bring on the heat!
At our Magnet® hospital, nurses solved a clinical practice problem by substituting a humble heating pad for expensive temperature-controlled "hot boxes" to promote blood draws. We’re shar...
If your organization has decided to embark on the Magnet journey or has already earned Magnet recognition, you might
be interested in answers to the frequently asked questions below.
Q My organizat...
NQF endorses more patient safety measures
The National Quality Forum (NQF) Board of Directors has endorsed 12 patient safety measures, including those related to patient falls, pressure ulcers, and healthcare-associated infections. The measur...
Issues up close
As the health economist for the American Nurses Association (ANA), I’ve been asked, "What will 2013 bring for RNs? Maybe even beyond 2013?"
Factors driving future demand
The beyond is the e...
Astute assessment saves a patient with PE
John Monroe, age 72, is admitted to the cardiac unit with shortness of breath, chest pain, and fatigue. He has a history of diabetes, hypertension, and myocardial infarction (MI). You place him on a t...
Helping patients survive sepsis
A common and devastating condition, sepsis has significant healthcare implications worldwide. An estimated 1 million cases occur in the United States annually, causing more deaths than prostate cancer...
Study identifies barriers to patient safety
A study by AIG of hospital C-suite executives and risk managers in the United States found that the largest barrier to patient safety is lack of teamwork, negative culture, and poor communication (42%...
Maximizing organ donation through aggressive donor management
Currently, more than 110,000 Americans are on the waiting list for a life-saving organ transplant. Each year, more than 5,000 people die while still waiting. Between January and October 2010, only 23,...
Stemming the rising tide of acute kidney injury
Acute kidney injury (AKI), which arises secondary to another disease or disorder, is common in medical, surgical, and critical-care hospital patients. The most common precipitating conditions are seps...
The magnetic draw of information technology
During the last century, the quality of healthcare in the United States improved nearly every decade. Undoubtedly, we’re now providing safer and more effective patient care. But at the same time...
Nurses' crucial role in preventing and documenting conditions not present on admission
Nurses’ crucial role in preventing and documenting conditions not present on admission By Eileen Shannon Carlson, JD, RN Starting in October 2008, hospitals will receive lower Medicare reimburs...
How to recognize and respond to hypovolemic shock
Accompanied by his daughter, George Moran, age 81, comes to the emergency department looking frail and weak. His vital signs are: blood pressure, 82/40 mm Hg; heart rate 130 beats/minute and regular; ...
Physiology review: Circulatory system
Chances are you frequently care for patients with cardiac and circulatory conditions and administer drugs affecting the circulation. This review of the circulatory system increases your knowledge base...
Is it syncope—or something worse?
Rose Jacobs, age 82, is transferred from the emergency department to the medical-surgical unit with a severe urinary tract infection (UTI). Her medical history includes coronary artery disease and ost...
Reducing catheter-associated urinary tract infections
Catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTIs) are the most frequent type of healthcare-acquired infection, accounting for up to 80% of hospital-acquired infections. CAUTIs can lengthen hospita...
Managing acute decompensated heart failure
Approximately 5 million Americans have heart failure (HF) and at least 550,000 more are newly diagnosed each year. HF is the most common Medicare diagnosis-related group. In 2006, direct costs associa...
Moving the Sharps Safety Agenda Forward: Consensus Statement and Call to Action
Note: This Consensus Statement and Call to Action was drafted by members of the steering committee* for the conference "Tenth Anniversary of the Needlestick Safety and Prevention Act: Mapping Prog...
Stemming a lethal immunologic response
AFTER EXPERIENCING VOMITING and diarrhea for the past day, Katherine Astley, age 52, visits her primary care provider. The physician finds the patient’s vital signs stable and sends her home with inst...
American Nurse Today 2010 Readership Survey
Please help us provide information that best meets your needs by responding to this survey. We value your input!...
Before blowing the whistle, learn to protect yourself
Most of us expect healthcare and academic institutions to uphold the highest ethical standards and to meet their moral obligations to patients, staff, students, and the community at large. Unfortunate...
Joint Commission issues new requirements for health and wellness programs
The Joint Commission has issued new requirements for hospitals accredited for behavioral health care, which includes health and wellness promotion programs. These institutions must have a must have a ...