Nursing professionals are in high demand all over the world these days thanks to an ongoing nursing shortage. In the 2020 State of the World’s Nursing report, the World Health Organization revealed a global shortfall of 5.9 million nurses. With nurses having their pick of which healthcare providers to partner with, many are choosing Magnet hospitals to help advance their careers.
Only 8.9 percent of all healthcare systems in the U.S. have received this coveted designation. As of the writing of this article, there were 576 Magnet hospitals.
In this article, we will discuss:
- What is a Magnet hospital?
- How do hospitals earn Magnet designation?
- What are the benefits of working for a Magnet hospital?
- What kind of nurses do Magnet hospitals prefer?
- How do you find Magnet hospitals?
What is a Magnet hospital?
A Magnet hospital is one that was awarded the special designation from the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). The ANCC created the award in 1993 for hospitals that satisfied certain criteria designed to measure the quality of their nursing. According to the credentialing center’s standards, a Magnet hospital is one that:
- Delivers excellent patient outcomes
- Holds a high level of satisfaction among its nurses
- Retains its nursing staff (low turnover rates)
- Provides appropriate grievance resolutions
Above all else, the Magnet Recognition Program® is for healthcare organizations that value nursing talent. More than a badge of honor, the Magnet hospital designation signifies to nursing professionals this is a hospital that will value their education and experience. Magnet hospitals provide an excellent work atmosphere conducive to improving patient outcomes while preserving nurse satisfaction levels.
How do hospitals earn Magnet designation?
Achieving a Magnet hospital status requires the demonstration of high standards of excellence in five key areas.
1. Transformational leadership
Today’s healthcare leadership is expected to move beyond the stabilization and growth model and instead embrace behaviors, beliefs, and values. Magnet hospitals demonstrate this kind of transformational leadership that directs nurses to where they need to be to meet future demands in healthcare. Atypical approaches and solutions must be embraced by hospital leadership as it creates a vision for the future, and the environment and systems required for achieving their goal.
2. Structural empowerment
Magnet hospital leadership understands the value of recognizing the contributions made by nursing staff. They commit to professional development and decentralize the decision-making process. They build new and strengthen existing partnerships with community organizations to improve patient outcomes. Staff must be developed, directed, and empowered to problem-solve to find the best way to achieve desired outcomes.
3. Exemplary professional practice
Magnet hospital candidates must possess a comprehensive understanding of nursing’s role in providing quality healthcare to patients, their families, and the community at large. New knowledge and evidence of healthcare outcomes must be pursued to establish a strong professional practice.
4. New knowledge, innovations, and improvements
Among the building blocks for Magnet hospitals are empowered healthcare professionals, exemplary practice, and strong leaders. Magnet organizations also must possess ethical and professional responsibility and commit to improvements, innovations, and visible contributions to the science of nursing.
5. Empirical outcomes
When hospitals follow the first four key areas, the natural result is good outcomes. A strong structure and processes provide quantifiable data hospitals can use to show how they have made a difference in patient outcomes and the science of nursing. The data should be used to establish quantitative benchmarks Magnet-recognized organizations can then use to produce a report card of their progress.
Hospitals that wish to be considered for Magnet recognition can submit an application for consideration. There is a processing fee associated with the application process and supporting documentation is also required.
The benefits of working for a Magnet hospital
One of the biggest benefits of working for a Magnet hospital is the assurance that nurses will be valued for their knowledge and experience in improving patient outcomes. As part of the application process, hospitals must demonstrate their commitment to employee satisfaction, which makes them attractive employment options for nursing professionals. Magnet hospitals also have fewer safety-related workplace incidents. These two factors lead to higher job satisfaction among nurses, which in turn prevents burnout. It is a win-win for both nurses and hospitals.
What kind of nurses do Magnet hospitals prefer?
Competition for open nursing positions at Magnet hospitals is fierce because of their reputation for providing a desirable environment for their nursing staff. Because they are committed to improving patient outcomes, Magnet hospitals prefer nurses with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree. Nurses with the goal of working for a Magnet hospital can boost their chances of getting hired by obtaining their BSN, followed by their Registered Nurse (RN) licensure if they do not already hold it.
How do you find Magnet hospitals?
The ANCC makes finding Magnet hospitals in the U.S. easy for nursing professionals through their online tool. Nursing professionals can search in the U.S. or internationally for Magnet facilities, then cross-reference those hospitals to see which may be hiring.
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