A recent systematic review showed that better patient outcomes may occur when hospital staff nurses are specially trained to care for specific patient populations (Butler et al, 2019). A recent study showed that when urology nurses are prepared for practice and providing nurses with the required training ensures consistency and excellence in patient care provided (Albaugh, 2012). Inadequate urologic nursing education can lead to an increase in long-term urinary catheter placements and high incidence of urinary retention in post-operative urology patients. The annual cost/patient for urinary catheter related infections as approximately $790-$1200 and estimated annual overall cost as $115 million - $1.82 billion (Sutherland et al, 2015).
The purpose of this project was to improve urology patient outcomes using an education intervention designed to increase nursing staff knowledge of fundamentals of urologic nursing care through a collaborative, interdisciplinary approach. The gaps in nursing care knowledge for urologic patients were identified across the hospital by urologists and nursing leaders. Nursing care processes were inconsistent among staff caring for urology patients, leading to poor patient outcomes and increased length of hospital stay for both medically and surgically managed urologic patients.
An interdisciplinary team of nursing leaders and clinicians, led by the medical clinical nurse specialist, was formed, and one unit was selected as designated urology unit. Education was provided to the nursing staff on that unit. A urology nursing education curriculum using evidence-based practice guidelines as the framework was developed. 50 registered nurses attended the course and based on their feedback, 40% appreciated learning about suprapubic catheters, 20% found post-operative care and continuous bladder irrigation very useful and 10% wanted more hands-on time during class and continuous staff training and updates for future classes. A workgroup was also created to update the current urology clinical practice guidelines used across the hospital.
After completing this learning activity, the participant will be able to assess innovations being used by other professionals in the specialty and evaluate the potential of implementing the improvements into practice