From record keeping and taking vital signs to assisting during diagnostic testing and educating patients, nurses play a vital role in the American health care system. Nurses work in a variety of medical settings, including doctors' offices, clinics, hospitals, rehabilitation centers and long-term care facilities. While many nurses set their own personal goals, there are some career goals and objectives that all nurses share. A nurse's primary objective — regardless of work environment — is to make sure all of her patients receive quality treatment in a timely manner.
Nurses help expedite patient wait times by taking care of routine tasks. For example, nurses check patients' vital signs and ask questions about patients' medical histories so that doctors have as much information as possible when it's their turn to see patients and can get straight to work. Taking care of a patient's needs is rarely a one-person task, so nurses step in to assist physicians during diagnostic tests and various medical procedures.
This helps ensure that all procedures are conducted properly. Patients don't always understand the potential side effects of the medications they're prescribed, the postoperative instructions they're supposed to follow or even the diagnoses they're given. Nurses play an important role in patient education, and their goal is to make sure all patients fully understand any information provided to them.
Nurses listen carefully to their patients' concerns and answer any questions they, or their family members, may have. Additionally, some nurses are highly active in their communities and may present seminars or workshops to the public covering various topics related to health.
Safety is important in any work environment, but it's especially important in medical settings. Doctors' offices, hospitals and similar settings are frequented by people who are sick and people with compromised immune systems, so it's essential that the environment is sterile and free of as many germs as possible.
Nurses carefully observe their surroundings throughout their shifts and identify potential hazards so they can be dealt with quickly. They carefully sterilize equipment and follow safety guidelines at all times to minimize the risk of spreading contagions. Additionally, nurses look out for physical hazards, such as spills, blocked hallways or even emotionally unstable patients and visitors.
A nurse is never done learning in her career, as technology and medical knowledge are constantly evolving. It's important for nurses to stay up-to-date in order to continue providing patients with the best possible care. As a result, all nurses strive to hone their skills throughout their careers and continue their educations. Nurses often attend continuing education courses hosted by colleges and universities, as well as professional workshops and seminars.
Many join professional organizations, such as the American Nurses Association, to gain access to exclusive training and education opportunities. Share It. Copyright Leaf Group Ltd.Successful nurses must be able to master the theory and practice of the profession. As well as needing to know the names of millions of acronyms, medications and organs, they also need to have the critical thinking, communication, and team work skills to be able to deal with life and death situations.
So, we caught up with Carolyn Poysner — one of our star trainers with 27 years of nursing experience — to find out what placements are all about and how to get the most out of them.
Gosh, when I say it out loud it sounds like a long time! From birth to death and anywhere in-between, when people are in a vulnerable state they open up much more than they normal would so I get to see an incredible side to humanity.
This is the main reason why I find nursing so rewarding. At Skills Training we structure the placements so that students gain experience in a range of healthcare settings. This means they get to see what life is like in each one and expand their skills and expertise as they move through their placements.
The learning process involved is a bit like building a house in that each placement is a layer of bricks that adds up to create a solid structure. Students do an aged care sector placement first. This exposes them to the diseases and types of problems that affect patients at this stage of life.
It also introduces them to how to work within a team healthcare professionals and allows them to consolidate basic skills, and learn new ones. Building on this experience, they then move into a sub-acute setting where the focus is the application of medicine and wound management. This placement is where they really get to apply theory to real-world situations.
I love seeing students return from placement because they always come back so inspired and excited about the diversity and choice of healthcare careers open to them.
SMART Goals for Clinical Placement
You need to be punctual and organised, go in with a positive attitude, and be prepared to listen and follow instruction. Basically, you get out what you put in so be prepared to put in. Most students on placement struggle with confronting the reality of the aging process, seeing patients who are seriously ill, or watching people die in front of them.
Others find the nitty gritty aspects of the job — like washing people and dealing with their bodily fluids — tough. And some find working with certain staff on placement difficult. This is totally normal because nursing can be challenging.
If you need support, you can always reach out to me or your placement facilitator for help. The healthcare sector is growing, and the scope of practice and areas nurses can work in are expanding. From paediatrics to palliative care, the choice of where you can apply your skills and expertise is vast. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Remember me Forgot Password. Could you tell us a little bit about yourself?
How did you get into nursing and why do you love it? How do placements work? What advice would you give to students to make the most of their placement? What do students struggle with the most on placement? If you had one piece of advice to give a prospective nursing student what would it be? Share Link :.SMART goals in nursing examples to construct your own meaningful, relevant objectives that drive your career forward. The importance of good goal-setting is often overlooked in a busy, stressful healthcare environment.
We have many nursing, homecare and health providers who've identified the importance of communicating clear objectives and use PeopleGoal to set the strategic framework, track and align their organizational goals.
Specific: This goal covers one clearly-defined area that's direct and easy to understand. Measurable: The goal has measurable outcomes that indicate when you've achieved the goal. Achievable: The goal is challenging but realistically achievable for your skills, resources and capabilities. Relevant: The goal supports the broader needs of the ward, department and organization.
As a nurse, setting good goals is critical as they help you to define your development framework and keep you on track with your progress. Goals can help you stay focused and keep you motivated when things get stressful and overwhelming.
This is particularly important in banded organisations such as the NHS where your skills and responsibilities are clearly defined at each level. Documenting your own progress and achievements is a big step forward in proving you're ready to move to the next level in your nursing career.
Setting objectives is a great exercise in autonomous self-development, but it's also a chance to open up a conversation with your manager or clinical lead to identify further goals you may not even have thought of. The NHS has a great set of both clinical and non-clinical SMART goals for you to see how other departments structure their team development, employee engagement, patient care and leadership objectives.
I will use the ward policy guidelines to construct an updated patient and staff safety and hazard checklist. This list needs to be checked by every staff nurse on a rotating basis once per month. I will complete the list by the end of September and measure monthly whether it is being completed by all team members. I will hand over patient details, care instructions and assessment notes to the next shift nurse before completing my shift.
I need to do this before every break to ensure patient details are noted and specific instructions are followed. Additionally, this will help all nursing staff to understand areas of interest for patients to built a rapport and help take their mind off of medical issues. The handover needs to happen every single time. You can use a checklist to be signed by both the departing and arriving nurses to make sure you're following protocol every time you end your shift.I Needed More OPTIONS! - My Nursing Goals
Following the weekly timetabling meeting I will document my additional tasks so that I can effectively divide up my time to manage all my duties. This will help me to improve my time management and delegate or ask for help whenever the ward becomes too busy. Taking ten minutes following a meeting where you're already dividing up tasks is achievable within your resources, and will save plenty of time in knowing exactly where you need to be and when.
As soon as I leave a patient I will chart all my notes about our interaction while they're still fresh in my mind. This will help streamline the shift handover and ensure I'm not forgetting to make important notes before I'm taken to my next task. Accuracy is extremely relevant to delivering the best patient care and minimising the risk of safety issues. By the end of the year I want to attend three half-day workshops geared towards my current specialty, another field suggested by my manager and one field I know nothing about.
You'll need to assess whether it's realistic to attend three workshops by the end of the year. Use our SMART goal setting template for Word and Google Docs to build on these examples and to construct your own meaningful, relevant objectives to move your career forward. Kylie Strickland. Blog Employees. The SMART methodology helps you to construct clearly defined goals using five attributes: Specific: This goal covers one clearly-defined area that's direct and easy to understand.
Timely: There's a clear due date by when the goal needs to be achieved. Safety I will use the ward policy guidelines to construct an updated patient and staff safety and hazard checklist.
Ask yourself, "How is this goal specific? Patient Care I will hand over patient details, care instructions and assessment notes to the next shift nurse before completing my shift. Ask yourself, "How is this goal measurable? Efficiency Following the weekly timetabling meeting I will document my additional tasks so that I can effectively divide up my time to manage all my duties.Forgot your password?
Or sign in with one of these services. I am starting my first adult health clinical rotation on Monday and need serious help establishing goals. My goals - learn as much as I can and pass the course! I just don't think the faculty will buy this! Can anyone share with me what they have used as goals to help spark some ideas?
LOL - that was my goal too Their goals were something along the lines of a measurable goal, like "I want to be able to assess 10 dialysis patients and determine their estimated dry weight and how much fluid should be removed during this dialysis treatment by the end of the semester or by the end of x-amt of clinical hours This is my first rotation, and I am fortunate to be in an all nurse practitioner, family practice clinic on my own for finding placement.
They see all types of patients, but my focus is supposed to be adults. I have e-mailed my clinical faculty as well for suggestions.
I know there are things that are part of my new, expanded role that I need to address, like gyn exams, that I have never done as an RN.
I just am not sure how specific I should get. I am a master of over-thinking these things and getting in my own way! Because most APN program run on the nursing model, my goals had to be measurable.
I think it is difficult because it is all new and I am not certain of what to expect. Any suggestions on writing up reasonable goals would be appreciated. I think I am having writers block! To be able to formulate at least one differential and one working diagnoses appropriate for the patients that I see by the end of the semester. I start clinical tomorrow at a peds urgent care center and our teachers told us that for our first clinical our goals should be simple as this is our first clinical experince.
I also made goals based on where i requested to do clinical e. Did you figure out your references? I need some, I'm starting my first clinical setting.
Tips on acing your nursing placement by our expert trainer Carolyn Poysner
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S — I will apply all the theories and skills I have learned from our block lab. Specifically, I want to demonstrate a head to toe assessment to my patient as this will serve as a baseline data in monitoring the progress of my patient.
The instructor will give me the opportunity to perform different nursing skills that are vital when I go into our first clinical setting by February M — By the time we are getting close into our clinical practice I am going to review all the nursing skills just to make sure that I can safely perform the task given to me like proper transfer technique.
A — I want to have a good performance review in our clinical practice. I will spend at least 30 minutes of my time to go over my notes like my student journal and practice the skills that I need to improve so that I will be confident in doing it.
R — I have worked in the long-term care facility so I have a background when it comes to helping clients in their activities of daily living such as dressing and bathing.
T — By the time we go for our first clinical experience in FebruaryI should be proficient and confident to perform all the nursing skills that I learned from our clinical procedure 1 and older adult mental health theory. Core competency nursing body of knowledge on evidenced-based experiencemy goal belongs in this 2.
I will apply and demonstrate the theories learned in conducting an extensive head-to toe assessment in the older adult clinical placement by March I have not met my goal yet because my clinical placement did not start. Hence, I will further my knowledge through reading and practice. Our activity in our Health Care for Older Adults Clinical Practice course helped me in developing my confidence to interact with seniors and encouraged me to measure my proficiency in conducting a head-to-toe assessment.
I was able to use the Katz Index assessment tool to determine if a senior can carry out their daily activities. This tool was developed on a 3-point scale and support scoring performance abilities to be evaluated as independent, assistive, dependent or incapable of performance Touhy et al. In my upcoming clinical practice, I will accomplish more once I am exposed to the clinical setting. I will achieve my goal by Marchand I will apply the knowledge I gained about conducting a holistic assessment into clients.
By FebruaryI will be reading various articles related to cultural diversity and multiculturalism. I will use these resources when applicable to my weekly forums. M — Before our clinical practice starts, I am already aware of and familiar with the cultural and religious beliefs of the patients with different cultural backgrounds. I should be able to have an idea on dealing with these patients with their cultural beliefs when it comes to touch or eye contact. A — I will spend 1 hour to read relevant articles like the aging process and cultural diversity, this will help me gain knowledge when it comes to different religious and cultural beliefs.
I will also check different websites if there are current news or research that will give me the idea to render the best possible care for a patient with certain care preference due to their cultural or religious belief.
R — I have an idea with Asian and Indian cultures but I wanted to deepen my knowledge with other cultural and religious beliefs. I will find a place where they offer free learning session especially in my local community centre such as senior and recreation centres. T — By FebruaryI should be ready and confident to go for my clinical practice as I already have cultural and religious learning when it comes to dealing with patients and render the best quality of care and prioritize their safety.
Core competency area quality care and client safetymy goal belongs in this 5.Nurses in the current work climate must be consistently looking for ways to remain competitive and abreast of new procedures and expectations in their field. In an effort to be competitive and deliver exceptional care, here are five professional goals for nurses. The number one objective for medical personnel is providing excellent care for patients. They heavily impact the patient experience and satisfaction levels.
Technology changes rapidly. While the latest technological developments enable medical professionals to deliver excellent care to their patients, the ever-evolving technology requires nurses to constantly learn new skills. On top of staying up to date with new technology, nurses must also learn to troubleshoot technology issues that could directly impact patient care in the event of a malfunction.
Nurses must focus on continuing to increase knowledge of pedagogy and evolution of medical techniques. Set a goal to learn something new every quarterand research ways to better develop technology skills, medical techniques, and recommended delivery of patient care.
Life-long learners will be rewarded with positive feedback and marked improvements in delivery of care. During an average hospital stay, a patient will see different staff. This requires collaboration and communication between all medical staff to deliver excellent care. The nurse assigned to a patient will need to communicate effectively and efficiently in person or via technology with others assessing patient needs.
From nursing assistants, lab technicians, pharmacology, doctors, and even housekeeping and nutrition, all staff contribute to the overall patient care, experience, and satisfaction.
Administering intravenous fluids and medication, entering patient data, distributing medicine, assessing pain levels, checking patient incisions, dealing with visitors, and juggling multiple orders from physicians are all part of a given shift for a nurse.
Learning Goals for Nursing Students
By honing specific skills to mastery level, a nurse makes herself more marketable and desirable in a given specialty. This level of mastery will also serve to accomplish providing excellent patient care to the continuing education goal mentioned above. Provide Excellent Patient-Centered Care The number one objective for medical personnel is providing excellent care for patients.
Increase Technology Skills Technology changes rapidly. Focus On Continuing Education. Develop Interpersonal Skills.
Become An Expert.Considering the valuable role of nurses in delivering quality healthcare, nursing programs focus on preparing competent nursing graduates.
In this context, it is important to remember that mere academic qualification is not enough; nurses also need to possess other qualities that will help them perform efficiently. Nursing students therefore need to focus on certain learning goals that will help them fulfill their role in an apt manner.
Learning goals for nursing students examples cover many dimensions of care. Nursing preceptorship goals focus on continued learning and correction of any skill deficits. Nursing graduates require a sound knowledge of the theoretical bases of nursing practices. The goals and objectives of the teaching program, however, should not be a mere passing on of information. It is vital that nursing students learn to apply this knowledge to real-life patient care scenarios.
Learning goals for nursing students examples must also include in depth study of medical ethics and professional boundaries. Nursing preceptorship goals include providing a role model for new nurses called preceptees. Goals must then be written as measurable objectives. For effective delivery of healthcare, nursing students need to develop a skill to think analytically.
Nurses will often encounter situations in which successful patient outcomes will depend on the aptness of their decision. Strong critical thinking skills are also important to help nurses evaluate research findings and apply them in practical everyday situations.
Considering the fact that nurses will work in different settings such as individual, group, family and community healthcare, they should be capable of judging which practices are most beneficial for a given situation. Depth of knowledge is essential in identifying possible solutions to problems and selecting the most beneficial and least harmful course of action. The very nature of their role demands that nurses exhibit high emotional stability and continuous positivity in their interactions with patients and caregivers.
Nursing students should therefore aim to cultivate a positive outlook and strong self motivation. This should reflect in their performance at both professional and personal levels through high academic achievements and superior interpersonal skills. Nursing students also need to develop cultural sensitivity to work well with patients from various racial, ethnic, and socio-economic groups.
Nursing preceptorship goals should include offering feedback to new nurses on how to communicate appropriately across cultures. Learning goals for nursing students examples include proficiency as a team player on a coordinated health care team. Nursing students should aim at developing team spirit that will allow them to work in coordination with other members of the healthcare team. Whatever the healthcare setting they work in, nurses will need to show an ability to accept responsibilities and be accountable for their actions.
Besides, they will also need to network with other clinical and non-clinical staff to ensure good management of available resources. The goals for clinical nursing experience emphasize the importance of cooperation and respect at all levels. Effective communication is a core competency of clinical nursing experience An ability to express ideas and suggestions through speech and writing will be the basis of a successful career in nursing.
Nurses should also be competent in the use of the latest technology for communication. This will enable them to gain insights by participating and interacting with other nursing professionals on various online healthcare forums. Interpersonal skills are especially important in cultivating a compassionate and gentle bedside manner.
Hailing out of Pittsburgh, Pa. He holds an associate degree in specialized technology from the Pittsburgh Technical Institute. Learning Goals for Nursing Students. About the Author.