YNHHS further integrates nursing to create signature of care


At a kickoff meeting for the nursing integration effort, Ena Williams, RN, YNHH interim chief nursing officer, (left) responded to questions from the audience. Joining her were (l-r): MaryEllen Kosturko, RN, Bridgeport Hospital senior vice president of Patient Care Operations/CNO; Anna Cerra, RN, Greenwich Hospital senior vice president of Patient Care Operations/CNO; Francine LoRusso, RN, YNHH vice president, patient services, Heart and Vascular Center, Transplantation Center and Medicine Services; and Richard D’Aquila, YNHHS president.

A lot has changed since 2012, when chief nursing officers from Bridgeport, Greenwich and Yale New Haven hospitals began phase one of a project to integrate nursing policies and practices health system-wide.

With the addition of L+M and Westerly hospitals and the expansion of Northeast Medical Group (NEMG), there are many more YNHHS nurses now, and a clear need to develop a health system-wide signature of care. In October 2017, clinical nurses and nursing leaders from the five YNHHS hospitals and NEMG kicked off the second phase of a project to accomplish that.

Their vision is to form a health system-based, integrated office of the chief nursing executive (CNE) by standardizing YNHHS’ approach to collaborative clinical care. A nationwide search for the health system’s first CNE is under way.

“This phase of the nursing integration effort focuses on how our health system distinguishes itself by its signature of care,” said Richard D’Aquila, YNHHS president. “We want to ensure that patients who come to any of our hospitals or any of our ambulatory sites receive the same level of safe, high-quality care to help them achieve optimal outcomes.”

D’Aquila is co-sponsoring the integration effort with all of the delivery network chief nursing officers, as well as nursing service line senior leaders. In addition to nurses, physicians, along with clinical and non-clinical staff from other departments, are involved in the integration project.

Project participants are divided into work groups focused on key areas:

  • Developing a YNHHS care signature 
  • Building a patient services operations center 
  • Creating a career academy 
  • Enhancing the professional practice of nursing

Watch for future communications about the nursing integration project.