SVMC Lauded for Innovative Patient Care

Contact: Eileen Druckenmiller
(802) 447-5558

BENNINGTON – A model for nursing patient care designed by Southwestern Vermont Medical Center (SVMC) has been featured in an independent research project. Health Work Solutions, LLC (HSW), received and reviewed over 200 entries from healthcare organizations throughout the United States before choosing 24 as “successful care delivery models.”

The nursing care delivery approaches were judged on their ability to provide a high level of patient care while still being cost effective. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) funded the project and is featuring the 24 designated models on its sponsored website,

According to the website, HWS was specifically looking for nursing care models that were “innovative,” “demonstrated a positive impact on quality, safety, cost, and/or (patient or caregiver) satisfaction,” and “that could easily be replicated...”

SVMC began using its approach, which redefines the role of registered nurses on hospital units, in 1999. The traditional nurse manager, charge nurse, and supervisor positions are replaced with alternate expert nursing roles, such as patient care managers and patient care coordinators. Additional allied health personnel, such as patient safety specialists, are also part of the model.

Katherine Riley, vice president of nursing at SVMC, had this to say about the model, “We wanted to create a nursing structure that would provide the best care for our patients while allowing nurses to practice in an environment where they can work more efficiently and where they feel valued.” Adds Riley, “The communication between doctors and nurses is more direct now.

Everyone benefits and patient satisfaction has increased.” SVMC is Vermont’s only hospital designated as a Magnet Nursing Center for Excellence. Details of the care model can be viewed on the website as “Patient Centered Care,” under the “Acute Care” heading.

Southwestern Vermont Medical Center is a part of Southwestern Vermont Health Care (SVHC). SVHC is a community-based, not-for-profit health system that exists solely for the benefit of the communities it serves. SVHC has a quest to make the communities it serves the healthiest in the nation.