How a Healthy Work Environment for Nurses Helps Them

How a Healthy Work Environment Helps Nurses

A healthy work environment helps nurses in providing patient care. As one of the best health care providers, nurses have the right to work in a safe, healthy, and empowering work environment. A good working environment equals quality nursing care and in this post, we will tackle the elements that make that environment work.

Standards of a Healthy Working Environment

The American Association of Critical-Care Nurses has identified six standards that are essential for a healthy working environment. These are: 

  • Skilled communication
  • True collaboration
  • Effective decision-making
  • Appropriate staffing
  • Meaningful recognition
  • Authentic leadership

A healthy work environment is vital in creating a suitable workspace for nurses. But for it to work, they must all share similar qualities. [1]

  • Skilled communication – this means everyone must seek well-rounded skills. Communication is just as important as clinical skills.
  • True collaboration – means that nurses should have multiple chances to share ideas and work towards a solution as a team.
  • Effective decision-making – is when nurses can say about matters that affect them. It includes their opinions about policies, care decisions, and having the opportunity to lead.
  • Appropriate staffing – is making sure that staffing is enough to meet the needs of patients and nurses.
  • Meaningful recognition – is when nurses are awarded for their contributions and acknowledge others in the same manner.
  • Authentic leadership – nurse leaders should demonstrate their best character and encourage others to promote a healthy work environment for all. 

How Can Nurses Provide a Good Working Environment?

There are times when working is all they do in a nurse’s career, and their environment won’t matter to them any longer. However, this can change, and each member of the nursing unit should do their part [2]. So, how can one provide a healthy work environment for nurses?

Utilizing individual strengths

Identifying your team’s strengths and weaknesses helps in maximizing your team’s effort. Let’s say one of your teammates can quickly help calm down a patient or upset family member. It would help if you worked with them to swiftly and effectively manage a situation. Discussing this with your team can help; this way, everyone knows what each other can do. It will be easier for the team to accomplish specific goals. 

Provide solutions to recurring issues

As a nurse, there will be times when we vent our frustrations to other nurses at work. However, if the problem still exists, what’s the point of venting? Instead of just airing your frustrations, try and think of ways as solutions to the problem. Send formal requests to management or suggest ways to solve the issues during meetings helps create a more positive work environment. 

Avoid taking things personally 

It is usual for coworkers to clash at work every once in a while. It is also essential that you don’t bring your problems at work to home and vice versa. In short, don’t take things personally. Be the bigger person and keep a calm head.

Keep in mind that you have higher priorities and patients under your care. However, do keep an open mind as well; leave your ego aside for a minute. Constructive criticism helps in improving your roles as nurses. And always remember that nurses provide quality care when they work together as a team. 

Show gratitude

Show your coworkers that you are also proud of their hard work and contribution to the team. Showing your appreciation for the accomplishments and success of your teammates also establishes respect. A simple thank you or praise can change a person’s day. It can also change the way your team works and create a healthy work environment for nurses

Be a good role model

If you want your team and other nurses to work in a positive environment, you must be a good example. By displaying effective communication, excellent nursing skills, and professionalism, you are setting a standard of practice. You are setting the tone for others to follow. It doesn’t matter if you are a new nurse or a tenured staff member. It’s never too late to be a positive influence on your colleague. 

A healthy work environment for nurses creates a place where nurses display their clinical skills, expertise, and knowledge. When the work environment is accessible and everyone cooperates, it’s also easier for nurses to provide patients quality nursing care. 

A workplace that emanates a positive atmosphere encourages nurses to stay in their jobs, reducing the chances of mass turnover. Patients are happier, staff members work smoothly, and quality care is at a hundred percent. 

Campaign for a Healthy Work Environment for Nurses 

As a nurse, you must care for patients to the best of your skills and knowledge. But what happens when the workplace is toxic?

The best way to deal with this kind of environment is to campaign for a better workplace. Make the first step in creating an environment that will make your coworkers happy and cooperative. 

Make sure to practice showing respect where respect is due. If there is any conflict among nursing staff, be sure to address the issue immediately so that both parties can agree amicably.

Come up with ideas to help your unit work as a team rather than a divided one. It will help resolve conflicts and ensure quality care is delivered correctly.

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