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Case Study

How CHI Health Implemented a Virtual Expert Nurse Staffing Model

10 Minute Read


    The challenge

    Most nurses operate in a primary staffing model, in which each nurse is solely responsible for their assigned patients. But this model doesn’t suit the needs of either novice or expert nurses. Novice nurses deliver care without formal oversight by their expert RN peers, which can harm quality and safety. At the same time, expert RNs tire of the physicality of bedside care delivery and may opt to leave the organization entirely.

    The organization

    CHI Health is a 14-hospital health system headquartered in Omaha, Nebraska, within the CommonSpirit Health enterprise.

    The approach

    In 2014, the system CNO at CHI Health worked with technology vendor Banyan Medical Services to introduce a virtual expert nurse role on inpatient units. This role allows the units to scale nursing expertise over a team-based staffing model while retaining expert RNs.

    The result

    The virtual team-based staffing model helps organizations adjust their skill mix, reducing labor costs. This model also helps improve care coordination and new nurse retention.

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