Minnesota: A Brief Overview of Nurses and Hospitals
In Minnesota, nurses play a significant role in hospitals and other medical facilities, and hospitals are important to the state. As of 2010, there were 133 hospitals across the state. For every thousand people in the state, there are 110 hospital visits each year, and 344 visits to the hospital emergency room. To stay in a Minnesota hospital, it costs an average of $1,731 per day.
Since there is a doctor shortage in Minnesota, Registered Nurses and Nurse Practitioners take on a strong role in the state’s health care. In 2011, there were 56,660 RNs in the state, and 2,913 Nurse Practitioners. Because of the doctor shortage, there are many NPs that serve as primary care physicians for Minnesotans. Nurse practitioners work independently, and they do not need a supervisory relationship with a physician to see patients. However, if they prescribe medication, they do need supervision of a physician, and it is up to that physician to determine what types of medications the NP can or cannot prescribe. Since the doctor would be held responsible for anything his/her nurse practitioner prescribes, he/she may elect to either not give a NP that authority, or may limit it to specific types of medications.
What’s a Magnet Hospital and Why Should Nurses Care?
In order to emphasize the importance of excellence in medical care, the American Nurses Credential Center manages a Magnet Hospital Program. To earn this credential, hospitals must display exceptional nursing standards and provide good working conditions for their nurses.
Since a Minnesota Magnet hospital holds nurses to a higher standard, most often they also pay for it. Nurses in Magnet hospitals earn nearly 5% more than those who work in Non-Magnet facilities. Nurses also report a higher level of job satisfaction at Magnet hospitals, including being appreciated by doctors for their medical knowledge. This satisfaction means the turnover rate in these hospitals is far lower than it is for non-magnet nurses. Many Magnet nurses are able to advance their careers more quickly because of the respect they earn from being part of the Magnet Program.
Characteristics of Magnet Hospitals
The Magnet Recognition Program was first developed in 1983. The program pointed to a number of different characteristics that it would look for in order to give the Magnet designation to a hospital. These are referred to as the “Forces of Magnetism.” These hospitals strive to maintain a cooperative and educational environment. Many Magnet hospitals are also teaching hospitals. Strong nursing leadership, and an organizational structure that emphasizes quality and community is all part of the culture of a Minnesota magnet hospital.
What does the Magnet Hospital Designation Mean to Nurses?
There are several reasons why a Magnet hospital is more attractive to nurses and patients. An article in nursingcenter.com revealed many of them. Here are a few things nurses can expect:
Magnet hospitals encourage and often provide educational opportunities for their nurses. A variety of internships are available as well as tuition assistance.
Magnet hospitals hold nurses to a high standard in order to provide the best care. Once a nurse is in, they can count on working with others who are equally qualified.
Good relationships with medical doctors
Often nurses work closely with doctors and have strong communication with one another to the point of collaboration. They are also able to make some decisions about patient care based on their own knowledge without having to check with the doctor.
While full staffing isn’t universal in a Magnet hospital, 61% of nurses in these hospitals felt they were adequately staffed, compared to 54% in hospitals seeking Magnet status, and 49% in pother hospitals.
Minnesota: Magnet Hospitals
Four different hospitals in Minnesota have earned the Magnet recognition, with two of those hospitals receiving it more than once. These are the hospitals.
Mayo Clinic, Rochester
Address: 200 First Street, S.W.
Rochester, MN 55905
Re-recognized: 2002, 2006, 2011
St. Cloud Hospital
Address: 1406 6th Ave. North
St. Cloud, MN 56303