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Cohen Children’s Medical Center gets top marks for nursing

The Cohen Children's Medical Center in New Hyde

The Cohen Children's Medical Center in New Hyde Park on May 3, 2016. The medical center has been recognized for its high quality nursing. Photo Credit: Yeong-Ung Yang

The Cohen Children’s Medical Center in New Hyde Park has been recognized for its high quality nursing, becoming the only pediatric hospital in the state to achieve a prestigious certification from a national nursing association.

The American Nurses Credentialing Center, a subsidiary of the American Nurses Association, has issued Magnet designations to 436 health care organizations globally that applied and met exacting standards for nursing care.

Magnet hospitals must pass a site visit after demonstrating two years of above-average performances compared to national hospital benchmarks. These include clinical outcomes in measures such as patient falls, pressure ulcers, central line infections and catheter-associated infections, and in patient satisfaction scores rating nurses’ courtesy, responses to call lights, teamwork, and sensitivity to personal needs or requests.

“It’s less than 6 percent of hospitals nationally that have earned this recognition,” said Cari Quinn, chief nursing officer and newly appointed deputy executive director of Cohen Children’s Medical Center, part of the Northwell Health system. “It’s a prestigious elite table to be sitting at, let me tell you.”

Two weeks ago, the hospital was notified to expect a phone call announcing whether it had achieved the designation. Quinn anticipated good news when she was told to invite guests for the announcement.

The call, when it came last Thursday on a speakerphone placed near a microphone, was cheered by hospital staff, patients and families who crowded into the hospital’s atrium with pom-poms, handclappers and confetti cannons.

“Oh my gosh, I couldn’t think of people more deserving than the nurses who work here,” Quinn said Monday. “For them it’s not a job, it’s a choice and a privilege to take care of somebody’s child and to help families heal.”

In a statement, Dr. Charles Schleien, executive director of Cohen Children’s and senior vice president and chair of pediatrics at Northwell Health, praised the nursing staff and the hospital’s commitment to a “relentless pursuit of excellence.”

“In pediatrics, we know how imperative it is to put the patient and family at the center of our care, and no one does that better than our nurses,” he said.

Northwell Health also includes three other Magnet hospitals, including Huntington Hospital, Long Island Jewish Medical Center in New Hyde Park and Northern Westchester Hospital in Mount Kisco. Quinn said Cohen’s was the 31st children’s hospital in the country to be designated a Magnet hospital.

Quinn said the hospital had earned the designation previously in 2001 when it was part of the LIJ campus, but decided to seek it anew in 2012 after it became a separate specialty hospital. The exacting process of accumulating data and preparing the application lasted several years.

“Magnet is about nursing excellence, clinical outcomes that nurses participate in, nursing satisfaction, their relationship to the community and other members of the health care team,” said Jan Moran, the Magnet Recognition Program’s executive director, based in Maryland. “We look at the nurses’ research and evidence based practice, research on the care they provide, and the environment they work in.”

Cohen, like all Magnet hospitals, must be recertified every three years and maintain its high standards, Quinn said. But for now, the excitement hasn’t yet worn off. “I’m as thrilled today as the day we found out,” she said.

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