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Claudia Bohn

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Press Releases

21 Nov

Methodist Hospital NICHE Program Reaches Exemplar Status

NOVEMBER 21, 2013


Media Contact:
Claudia Bohn
Communications & PR Manager
Methodist Health System


OMAHA – Setting the standard for caring for geriatric patients, the Methodist Hospital Nurses Improving Care for Healthsystem Elders (NICHE) program has obtained “Exemplar” status, the highest of four possible program levels.

The “Exemplar” status recognizes Methodist Hospital’s ongoing, high-level dedication to geriatric care and pre-eminence in the implementation and quality of system-wide interventions and initiatives that demonstrate organizational commitment to the care of older adults.

“To us, as a hospital, it means our staff has increased their knowledge and skills in the care of older adults,” said Deborah Conley, MSN, APRN-CNS, GCNS-BC, FNGNA and NICHE Program Director. “Through the efforts we have made, our staff have a better understanding of the population we serve. Elder care is our business and this designation tells consumers we meet a high standard of excellence in geriatric health care.”

 After having maintained senior-friendly status the past several years, Conley and her NICHE team enhanced their efforts in order to obtain “Exemplar” status. Through increased staff and employee education and the completion of a fourth cohort of AgeWISE nurse residents, the specific care needs of the geriatric population have become the standard of care.

 “Through our participation in the NICHE program we are able to offer evidence-based, interdisciplinary approaches that promote better outcomes, positive experiences, and improved care for the older adults in our care,” Conley said. “This leads to greater satisfaction rates for our patients, their families and our staff.”

Along with Methodist Hospital, Methodist Jennie Edmundson Hospital also became a NICHE hospital earlier this year.

The AgeWISE nurse residency program, also under the direction of Conley, focuses on care to older adults who are nearing the last 2 – 5 years of life. It pairs novice staff nurses with more experienced nurse colleagues.  Together, the nurses engage in classroom learning and clinical practice to learn current evidence-based gerontological and palliative care nursing knowledge and then integrate that knowledge into their practice setting.

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About NICHE:  An international program designed to help hospitals improve the care of older adults. The vision of NICHE is for all patients 65-and-over to be given sensitive and exemplary care. The mission of NICHE is to provide principles and tools to stimulate a change in the culture of health care facilities to achieve patient-centered care for older adults. NICHE, based at NYU College of Nursing, consists of 500 hospitals and health care facilities throughout North America.

About Methodist Hospital: Founded in 1891 by members of the Methodist Church in Omaha, Nebraska Methodist Hospital, is a not-for-profit, 423-bed acute care hospital serving the metropolitan-Omaha area. With more than 2,000 full-time employees and over 400 physicians on active staff, Methodist Hospital has a tradition of providing quality health care to the region in cardiovascular surgery, neurosurgery, cancer care, gastroenterology, orthopedics, and comprehensive diagnostic services.