As Atrium Health experiences continued growth throughout our region, it is critical that we also grow the future nursing leaders who will provide our patients with unparalleled care. Atrium Health Foundation has taken on the charge to support our nurses through the Atrium Health Nursing Fund. Gifts to the fund help to advance the nursing profession at Atrium Health by providing enhanced medical technology, educational resources, and opportunities for professional development that will grow our nursing leadership, now and in the future.
Recently, we had the privilege of speaking with Maureen Swick, Atrium Health Enterprise SVP of Nursing and Pharmacy, who shared her greatest hopes for the future of nursing at Atrium Health with support from the Atrium Health Nursing Fund:
AHF: 2021 was heralded the Year of the Nurse – a fitting testament to the incredible contributions of nursing professionals amidst numerous challenges facing health systems nationwide. What are some of your nursing team’s accomplishments that you are most proud of this past year?
Maureen: There are so many…our nurses went, and continue to go, above and beyond for our patients and community members. From staffing COVID-19 testing and vaccine sites, to caring for the most critically ill patients, Atrium Health nurses have shown incredible strength. We have also used this opportunity to adapt and innovate. For the past several months, nurses at Atrium Health Pineville have piloted a new Virtual Nursing Observation program to have an extra set of eyes on some of their sickest patients. This innovative program could help shape the future of the nursing profession, address staffing shortages, and support applications for telemedicine. During the Year of the Nurse, the first Atrium Health nursing podcast — First Best Nurse — was launched.
AHF: We have seen philanthropy play a vital role in advancing medical technology. How will technological innovations impact the nursing field at Atrium Health, and what developments in this area can our donors get behind?
Maureen: I believe the Virtual Nursing Observation (VNO), a new and innovative program, could help shape the future of nursing. There are opportunities to support both the mobile and stationary cameras needed for every patient room, as well as monitors required to support workflows.
AHF: The tremendous contributions of our nurses on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic cannot be overstated. How do you stay positive and inspire our nurses to persevere, and what brings you hope?
Maureen: Our teammates inspire me to stay positive! They give me hope with their unending care. Self-care is so important; I walk five miles every day, and I also believe in healthy eating. I segment my time so that I can reflect, and I encourage my leaders and staff to do the same.
AHF: The Giving Hope comprehensive philanthropic campaign aims to transform healthcare in all areas of the enterprise. How do you envision the future of Atrium Health Nursing with this transformational support from our community?
Maureen: Donors’ support could mean more nursing-specific research that addresses and promotes health equity in our community. We are also working hard to create the “Room of the Future,” which would not be possible without the support from our donors. This new technology would include the Virtual Nurse Observation program, as well as automatic documentation that will help every nurse perform their job more efficiently and give patients more ease of access.
To support Atrium Health nurses during National Nurses’ Month – the month of May– or year-round, visit AtriumHealthFoundation.org/Nurses.