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A Balanced Approach to Reinstating Family Presence

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DESCRIPTION Family engagement in a loved one’s health care has been firmly established as a driver of safer care, better patient outcomes and greater efficiency in care processes. The highly transmissible and fatal properties of the COVID-19 virus, though, have complicated this family engagement equation. To reduce spread, care settings around the world have limited access into their facilities only to those deemed essential to care and operations. Family caregivers were notably excluded. When the COVID-19 outbreak strained our healthcare systems, family caregivers who had assumed an essential role as advocate, family spokesperson and a key source of continuity and care coordination between care encounters were marginalized as literal outsiders. For many patients, families, and healthcare professionals, the impact of these family presence restrictions has been devastating. It is a fundamental role for all nurses to advocate for family presence. In this session, participants will be introduced to a shared decision-making tool that supports nurse leaders and other decision-makers in advocating for evidence-informed, data-driven and person-centered visitation policies – now and in the future. LEARNER OBJECTIVES Understand the unintended consequences of family presence restrictions and the impact on patients, families, nurses and other caregivers. Delineate the important distinction between casual visitation and the essential role that family care partners play as members of the care team. Learn strategies for advocating for evidence-informed, data-driven and person-centered visitation policies. NURSING CEs This course has been approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, provider #CEP16785, for a maximum of 1.00 Nursing Contact Hour. The licensee must retain this document for a period of four (4) years after the course concludes.

Association for Leadership Science in Nursing

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