Massachusetts General Hospital recognized
for continued nursing excellence
American Nurses Association
renews highest honors of Magnet status
BOSTON - April 15, 2008 - The American
Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) today formally designated
Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) as a "Magnet" hospital
through 2012. Magnet designation represents the highest available
honor for nursing excellence, and in 2003, MGH became the first
hospital in the state to earn Magnet status. Fewer than 5 percent
of the hospitals in the United States are Magnet designated, and
the renewed honor for MGH acknowledges the hospital's continued
high-quality patient care and innovations in professional nursing
"MGH has a long tradition of nursing excellence, leadership,
learning, and high-quality, compassionate care. I am very proud
of this noteworthy recognition," says Jeanette Ives Erickson,
RN, MS, FAAN, senior vice president for Patient
Care Services and chief nursing officer. "We are honored
to receive this prestigious distinction from the ANCC, which truly
recognizes the MGH community as a whole-our interdisciplinary, patient-
and family-centered practice."
The concept of Magnet designation was born out of a 1983 study
by the American Academy of Nursing Task Force on Nursing Practice
in Hospitals to identify and describe variables that created an
environment that attracted and retained well-qualified nurses who
promote quality patient care. Forty-one of the 163 institutions
studied were described as "Magnet" hospitals because of
their ability to attract and retain professional nurses despite
a significant nursing shortage. In 1990, the American Nurses Association
(ANA) Board of Directors approved a national Magnet recognition
program, and responsibility for the development and maintenance
of this program was assigned to the ANCC. The ANCC is a separately
incorporated and governed subsidiary of the ANA.
The multi-phased Magnet evaluation process for MGH involved a thorough
review of both written and observed evidence of the quality of nursing
practice against specific ANCC standards and criteria. The MGH documentation
submitted to the ANCC in 2007 totaled some 2,600 pages of "written
evidence," which appraisers reviewed and scored, earning the
hospital a site visit. In late February, a team of five ANCC appraisers
spent three days evaluating the hospital's performance and its ability
to integrate the ANCC standards into practice, the delivery of care,
professional development, inter-disciplinary teamwork, quality and
safety, leadership, documentation and the ability to provide culturally
competent care. Throughout their onsite visit, the appraisers visited
multiple patient care units and practice areas, and interviewed
all members of the health care team, including patients and families,
as well as hospital leadership.
Surrounded by members of her leadership team, Ives Erickson received
official notification of the hospital's Magnet redesignation via
a phone call from Brenda Kelly, RN, MA, CNAA, BC, chair, Commission
on the Magnet Recognition Program. Kelly shared that it was a pleasure
for the ANCC to review the MGH, noting that the hospital was doing
many great things. During their February site visit, the appraisers
also noted that they were especially impressed by the high level
of quality care and attention to patient safety, as well as the
depth and breadth of interdisciplinary teamwork they observed throughout
"This is a tremendous and well-deserved recognition,"
says Peter L. Slavin, MD, president of the MGH. "I applaud
the coordinated effort this took from all corners of the hospital.
From the Cancer Center to the Heart Center, from the MassGeneral
for Children to Orthopaedics and Vincent Obstetrics and Gynecology
Services, all of the members of Patient Care Services and the hospital
community were instrumental in helping the MGH receive this wonderful
The Magnet Recognition Program is based on five model components-transformational
leadership, structural empowerment, exemplary professional practice,
new knowledge, innovation and improvements, and empirical quality
results. These quality indicators and standards of nursing practice
include the appraisal of both qualitative and quantitative factors
in nursing. The program also provides a vehicle for disseminating
successful practices and strategies among nursing systems, allowing
nurses at MGH and other Magnet hospitals to serve as role models
for the delivery of nursing care locally, nationally and internationally.
"I am reminded daily that MGH nurses are the best of the best,"
says Ives Erickson. "It's quite gratifying to have the American
Nurses Association formally reconfirm what I've always known, that
I work with the greatest nurses in the world."
Founded in 1811, the MGH is the third oldest general hospital in
the United States and the oldest and largest in New England. The
900-bed medical center offers sophisticated diagnostic and therapeutic
care in virtually every specialty and subspecialty of medicine and
surgery. Each year the MGH admits more than 46,000 inpatients and
handles nearly 1.5 million outpatient visits at its main campus
and health centers. Its Emergency Department records nearly 80,000
visits annually. The surgical staff performs more than 35,000 operations
and the MGH Vincent Obstetrics Service delivers more than 3,500
babies each year.
The MGH conducts the largest hospital-based research program in
the country, with an annual research budget of more than $500 million.
It is the oldest and largest teaching hospital of Harvard Medical
School, where nearly all MGH staff physicians serve on the faculty.
The MGH was the first in the state to achieve Magnet status for
nursing, and it is consistently ranked among the nation's top hospitals
by US News and World Report.
Media Contacts: Emily
Parker, MGH Public Affairs
Physician Referral Service: 1-800-388-4644
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