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Top-Notch Nursing

The nurses at Torrance Memorial Medical Center have always provided top-notch care to their patients, and recently they received national and international recognition for their work on two projects: High-Risk OB Committee and Ultrasound-Guided IV Access. Both projects demonstrate that the care provided by these nurses is on par with the most experienced academic medical centers in the country.

Kadi Gonzalez, RN, clinical level 3 nurse and High-Risk OB coordinator, and Donna Yukihiro, RN, clinical nurse specialist, developed the High-Risk OB Committee when the Labor and Delivery Shared Decision-Making Council saw a rise in highrisk pregnancies.

These nurses saw a need to coordinate care and prepare for women with complicated pregnancies. The idea was to create a process that communicates information about these patients with all members of the team.

Once a pregnancy is declared high-risk, a care plan is created to support the woman throughout the entire pregnancy. A plan is already in place and implemented when a patient arrives at the hospital to ensure the safety of the mother and baby during delivery.

“Patient and staff satisfaction are higher, and we can now provide improved care to all of our mothers
and babies,” Gonzalez says.

Since July 2009, 280 mothers have been referred to the High-Risk OB Committee. The results have been presented at six local and national conferences, one having more than 10,000 attendees. And a poster presentation of the High-Risk OB Committee received the first-place award at the March of Dimes conference in Irvine, California, and the Association of Women’s Health, Obstetrics, and Neonatal Nursing Conference, in Orlando, Florida.

The Ultrasound-Guided IV Access project is also gaining international recognition. Led by emergency clinical nurse specialist Alfie Ignacio, RN, and ED nurse Maria Theresa Santiago, RN, the project’s goal is helping patients in the emergency room with difficult IV access.

“The ultrasound machine helps us visualize the veins so we can insert the IV faster and more accurately,” Ignacio says. “We are able to decrease the number of IVs that we are sticking into patients, and medical treatment is started sooner. This has made patients happier since it is now a quicker and more precise procedure.”

Ignacio is headed to the International Nursing Research Congress in Hong Kong in July to present his project. He is also in the process of obtaining a grant to order additional ultrasounds for inpatients, since this strategy is currently only used in the emergency room and radiology.

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