Magnet Hospitals | CHCM
By Gen Guanci

The Significance of Magnet Recognition

As the population inevitably ages in today’s fast-paced world, the number of health disorders, chronic illnesses, and co-morbidities that require healthcare services is also dramatically increasing. As a result, organizations in the healthcare industry must hire more skilled nurses to meet the growing demand for high-quality health treatment and services. The employment outlook for nurses is expected to remain stable over the coming years. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), registered nurses have an employment growth prediction of 9% from 2020 to 2030.

As the demand for nurses continues to rise, nurses are more focused on getting employment with organizations with a reputation for offering the best care and nursing expertise. That being said, nurses prefer to work at Magnet-recognized hospitals. Nurses that work in Magnet hospitals benefit from improved working conditions, higher job satisfaction, career growth opportunities, and the ability and resources to treat critically ill patients more successfully.

Additionally, research suggests that receiving Magnet designation has particular advantages for healthcare organizations and the communities they serve, such as improved patient satisfaction with nurse communication, higher financial bond rating, and lower mortality risk and hospital acquired conditions. In a Magnet hospital, more nurses are content with their job, and fewer nurses report wanting to leave their job.

If you’re a professional in hospital leadership, this article will explain what Magnet recognition is and why it’s beneficial to seek Magnet recognition for your healthcare organization.

What Are Magnet Hospitals?

Magnet Status | CHCM

A hospital that has received Magnet recognition is regarded as the pinnacle of nursing practice and development. The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) runs the Magnet Recognition Program and designates qualified hospitals. They recognize Magnet hospitals as places where nurses are empowered to not only take the lead on patient care but also serve as the catalysts for institutional change, improvement, and innovation in the healthcare industry. 

To receive Magnet recognition, organizations must complete a demanding Magnet Recognition Program multi-year “journey” that necessitates extensive participation from leadership and staff. The standard process of earning Magnet recognition includes:

  • Electronic application that signifies intent to submit the requires document
  • Completion of a comprehensive self-study document
  • Onsite visit that verifies, clarifies, and amplifies the information in the self-study document
  • Decision by the ANCC Commission on Magnet

Due to the comprehensive Magnet Recognition Program standards for receiving Magnet recognition, only about 9% of US hospitals are designated as Magnets. Currently, there are 591 Magnet hospitals.

Magnet Recognition Program

If you’re running a hospital or healthcare organization, the Magnet recognition program should be included as one of the most important goals to achieve for your organization. Magnet status is the highest recognition for nursing excellence granted to hospitals in the US and across the globe that have demonstrated a dedication to offering high-quality patient care and services. 

The American Academy of Nursing (AAN) Task Force on Nursing Practice in Hospitals carried out a study in 1983 to pinpoint characteristics of hospitals that successfully attracted and retained nursing employees. Using the 1983 research as a foundation, the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) established the Magnet Hospital Recognition Program for Excellence in Nursing Services in 1990.

The University of Washington Medical Center in Seattle was the first organization to be designated in 1994. Magnet status aims to recognize and elevate nursing quality since superior patient outcomes can result from nursing excellence. Magnet hospitals typically feature lower patient-to-nurse ratios, reduced surgical patient mortality rates, lower rates of hospital-acquired infections, and shorter average stay times for patients in general.

How To Achieve Magnet Designation

A medical facility must fulfill a set of requirements established by the American Nurses Credentialing Center to gauge nursing excellence to be designated as a Magnet hospital. The ANCC lists the following criteria as part of the requirements for Magnet status:

  • Health work environment
  • Nursing professional practice
  • Improvement and innovation in nursing practice
  • Sustained quality patient outcomes

The process to become a Magnet hospital is not easy, and many hospitals and healthcare institutions that apply for Magnet work on it for years. Many organizations aren’t able to meet the demands of the long application, strict requirements, and thorough review processes that necessitate comprehensive record-keeping, data analysis, efficient organizational procedures and most important, clinical nurse involvement.

According to the ANCC, a facility’s nurse leaders must have a nursing bachelor’s degree or higher to qualify for Magnet. Additionally, Magnet aspiring hospitals are subject to a document review process and a site visit to evaluate their performance related to the “forces of magnetism” that were first discovered by the Magnet hospital study in the 1980s.

Components of the Magnet Model

Nursing Excellence | CHCM

According to the ANCC, the organizational characteristics and components to be a Magnet-recognized hospital are now divided into five essential components:

Transformational Leadership

The Magnet Recognition Program evaluates both the management style of hospital executives and the caliber of nurse leadership. According to the ANCC, CNOs and leaders of Magnet hospitals must possess vision, leadership, clinical knowledge, and a solid grounding in nursing practice.

Structural Empowerment

The Structural Empowerment element of the Magnet designation examines several key factors of an institution:

  • Personnel policies and procedures
  • Professional development programs
  • Interprofessional and community organization engagement

Clinical nurses have a significant role in creating and revising organizational policies at hospitals with Magnet status to enhance better patient outcomes and practice. The hospital and its patients profit from this approach, and nurses may also become more engaged and satisfied with their work as a result.

Exemplary Professional Practice

Health care organizations seeking Magnet recognition are evaluated on both the nursing quality within the facility and the outcomes that can be produced by that exemplary professional practice. Nurse’s collaboration with the interprofessional team are two professional practice measures that are examined as part of the Magnet designation process.

New Knowledge, Innovations, and Improvements

Magnet hospital recognition pushes healthcare organizations to base organizational improvements and best practices on concrete data and evidence rather than just making changes for the sake of making changes. Magnet organizations should demonstrate a commitment to developing high-caliber nursing and patient care practice, leveraging current research, innovative findings, and creative contributions to enhance nursing overall.

Empirical Quality Results

The Magnet recognition process of today places a heavy emphasis on structure and procedures, with the expectation that positive results will follow. Outcomes need to be characterized in terms of sustained clinical outcomes relevant to nursing, this includes:

  • Workforce outcomes
  • Patient and consumer outcomes
  • Organizational outcomes

These results serve as an approach to demonstrate excellence and the report card of a healthcare institution that has received Magnet recognition.

Nursing Excellence and Magnet Hospitals

Nurses prefer to work in Magnet hospitals because the standard has earned the highest recognition for nursing given to hospitals in the US and throughout the world. The designation proves that the hospital has a commitment to providing the highest quality patient treatment and services. Magnet hospitals pride themselves on excellence in nursing.

In comparison to hospitals without Magnet designation, Magnet hospitals frequently have:

  • More BSN-educated nursing staff
  • More specialty-certified nurses
  • Less supplemental nursing staff
  • Better work environments
  • Greater rates of nursing satisfaction

In Magnet hospitals, nursing leaders, staff nurses and all nursing professionals are less likely to experience high burnout and be dissatisfied with their jobs. Additionally, Magnet hospitals tend to offer fair pay and benefits, chances for professional growth, highly motivated leadership and coworkers, enhanced interprofessional relationships, and importantly, have a stellar reputation.

What Is Magnet for Patients?

Patients today are considerably more informed and particular and they are looking for unbiased standards to help them select their care. Patients and their families can use Magnet designated hospitals as a gold standard to assess the level of care they can expect to get. Magnet designation makes it easier for people to select hospitals where they can find skilled nurses, top-of-the-line equipment, and higher-quality care.

Benefits of a Magnet Hospital

In addition to being recognized among the best nursing organizations in the world, your organization can gain a lot of advantages to have Magnet recognition.

Higher Job Satisfaction

According to a study comparing nurse outcomes in Magnet and non-Magnet hospitals, nurses at hospitals with Magnet status were 18% less likely than those in non-Magnet hospitals to be dissatisfied with their jobs. Magnet hospitals stand out for the caliber of the nurses they employ. They have demonstrated a high level of leadership and caring within the hospital administration. The Chief Nursing Officer must be a member of the hospital’s highest governing decision-making and strategic planning bodies for it to be granted Magnet designation. When nurses hold top leadership positions within the hospital, they have the power to make changes that benefit nurses and raise employee satisfaction.

Recruit and Keep Top-Tier Talent

Nurses prefer to work in a Magnet hospital. As a result, it is easier to recruit top-tier, highly skilled nurses to work for you. Achieving Magnet status not only attracts more experienced nurses but also nursing students and graduates with excellent nursing education. Many talented nurses with a graduate degree education are searching out Magnet hospitals because of the excellent reputation they have. Because a Magnet hospital offers superior working satisfaction, employees are more inclined to stay once they start there. Due to the hospital’s reputation as Magnet, exceptional nurses will choose to remain employed with the company due to the excellent compensation, perks, resources, policies, and opportunities for advancement in leadership.

More Chances to Help Patients

Today’s patients have more and better healthcare options to choose from because of the evolving healthcare system and the availability of hospitals. However, patients favor Magnet hospitals more and rank them as their top option. A Magnet hospital is always in the lead in a very competitive environment where healthcare is booming. Magnet Recognition programs are an unbiased indicator of excellent patient outcomes, that can result in more patient volume for your organization.

Lower Patient Mortality

A study that was published in Medical Care, Official Journal of the Medical Care section of the American Public Health Association, found that Magnet hospitals had significantly lower patient mortality rates in addition to the many other direct advantages that exist for nurses working in such facilities. When compared to patients at non-Magnet hospitals, patients receiving care at Magnet hospitals had mortality rates that were 14% lower. An example of this is patients had a 12% lower chance of a failure to rescue during surgical procedures. 

Working at a Magnet hospital not only provides nurses with better working conditions, higher job satisfaction, and career growth opportunities, but it also enables them to perform their duties more skillfully and more effectively treat patients who are critically ill, which is one of the most rewarding experiences as a professional in the health industry.

CHCM Services To Help Your Organization Achieve Magnet Status

Achieving Magnet status as a hospital, nursing facility or healthcare organization is difficult. There are requirements and rigorous standards that you need to meet. Considering the significance of Magnet recognition for a healthcare institution, you will need the assistance of a reliable Magnet designation consultancy company to achieve your goals.

Creative Health Care Management is a leading Magnet recognition consultation company that is known by successful Magnet Program Directors and key stakeholders. Creative Health Care Management has extensive knowledge of what it takes to build the kind of organization the ANCC is proud to recognize. We are highly experienced in the inner workings of this complicated, multiyear journey towards getting the highest world-class designation that a nursing institution can get. 

Creative Health Care Management offers comprehensive services that are essential for any health organization to achieve Magnet recognition:

  • Full-spectrum support for the entire Magnet journey, including coaching, document setup and review, structure and process development, and site visit preparation including mock visits
  • Support is through the lens of culture and cultural transformation as opposed to a checklist of “things: to be done
  • Readiness Assessments and Gap Analysis that compares where an organization is as compared to the Magnet requirements
  • Re-designation Vulnerabilities Assessment, for redesignating organizations, to find out where you stand concerning the ANCC Magnet standards right now and identify your weaknesses and improve
  • Developing and improving the shared governance infrastructure
  • Increasing staff participation and their capacity to explain how it affects practice by utilizing a framework that promotes the goals of your organization and helps your care delivery model be more effective
  • Promoting quality in nursing practice, advanced professional nursing performance, and professional development
  • Peer feedback to improve professional performance
  • Data management as a practice catalyst that is relevant to the nurses at the bedside, who can impact practice
  • Mentoring and coaching of individuals (MPDs) leading the journey to Magnet designation
  • Wide variety of workshops to facilitating the path to excellence

With Creative Health Care Management’s partnership on your journey to excellence, aka Magnet journey, the achievement of Magnet designation, the achievement of, the undisputed gold standard for excellence in patient care for your healthcare organization is within reach.

Sources:

Registered Nurses | bls.gov

The Transformative Role of Magnet Status for Hospitals and how it Impacts Nurses | post.edu

Magnet Programs | Nursing World

What is a Magnet Hospital? | snhu.edu

Why Choose a Magnet Hospital? | Mercy One.

Frequently asked questions about Magnet | UC Davis Health

What is a Magnet Hospital? | Duquesne University.

Magnet Nursing: 5 Advantages to Working in a Hospital with This Designation | Rasmussen University

Nurse Outcomes in Magnet® and Non-Magnet Hospitals | The Journal of Nursing Administration

Lower Mortality in Magnet Hospitals | Lippincott Journals