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J Cariaso-Sugay, M Hultgren, BA Browder and JL Chen
Abstract
Whether natural or human-induced, disasters are a global issue that impact health care systems' operations, especially in the acute care setting. The current COVID-19 pandemic is a recent illustration of how health care systems and providers, especially nurses, respond to a rapidly evolving crisis. Nurse leaders in the acute care setting are pivotal in responding to the multifactorial challenges caused by a disaster. A quality improvement project was developed to increase nurse leaders' knowledge and confidence in disaster management during the COVID-19 pandemic at 2 Magnet-designated acute care hospitals within the John Muir Health system in Northern California. A total of 50 nurse leaders initially participated in this project, with 33 participants completing the postintervention survey. Results indicated significant improvement in perceived knowledge and confidence in disaster management after the intervention. Qualitative responses from project participants highlighted the need to annualize educational opportunities to sustain knowledge and consistently review emergency management operations plans. This quality improvement project provided an approach to educating nurse leaders in disaster management to promote resilience, support of employees, and optimal patient outcomes during disasters.
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