January 14, 2009
Operative Care Line Nurse Lisa McGowan, R.N. comforts a patient during Hurricane Ike.
HOUSTON - The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), the nation's leading nursing credentialing organization, today again granted its Magnet Recognition for Excellence in Nursing Services to the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center (MEDVAMC). The MEDVAMC is only the second VA medical center in the nation to achieve this recognition, and remains in the group of fellow Texas Medical Center facilities with Magnet status, The Methodist Hospital, St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital, Texas Children's Hospital, and The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center.
"I am elated by the news the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center has again achieved Magnet status," said MEDVAMC Chief Nurse Executive Thelma Gray-Becknell, R.N., M.S.N. "This recognition speaks volumes about the outstanding people and programs we have, and the high quality of care we provide to the veterans in southeast Texas." Anticipating the official phone call from ANCC headquarters in Washington D. C. announcing the Magnet designation, Gray-Becknell arranged for the call to be broadcast in the facility’s auditorium so all MEDVAMC nursing staff could hear the results and share the recognition.
Magnet is the highest honor a health care organization can receive for nursing services. ANCC has conferred this national designation on some of the country's most prestigious institutions, including the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota and Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. The Magnet program was developed to recognize health care organizations that provide the best in quality patient care and uphold excellence in professional nursing practice.
Independent studies of Magnet hospitals have shown that patients average a shorter length of stay and higher rate of satisfaction, nurses are more satisfied with their work and the care they provide, and hospitals have an increased rate of retention among nurses. Indeed, the registered nurse (RN) vacancy rate at the MEDVAMC is 3.5 percent. This number is remarkable when compared to the results of the 2002 American Health Care Association Nursing Position Vacancy and Turnover Survey, which found nationwide, the vacancy rates among staff RNs averaged 15 percent.
To receive the ANCC's Magnet designation, a team of professionals appraises a hospital's nursing services, clinical outcomes, and patient care. Research data and extensive interviews are used to evaluate the nursing practice and how practices impact the patient, family, community, and nursing services.
# # #