Pandemic Fund Supports Nursing Resource Center Renovations, Expansion
Before the pandemic, Morristown Medical Center had a centralized space, the Nursing Resource Center, which provided second-shift nurse managers, nurses and nursing assistants a landing pad for their work throughout the nighttime hours. The administrative space, while appreciated, was generally not meeting the needs of the team: it was small, lacked enough storage, had an open floor plan, making it hard to have more private conversations, and was missing the technological advances to support life-saving work.
Fast forward to March of 2020: Morristown Medical Center began responding to the growing number of COVID-19 patients, and the Nursing Resource Center became the operational hub to centralize care teams scheduling and redeployment. The issues that were present with the space before the pandemic became pronounced when hospital volume began to increase with the influx of patients.
“Running a medical center that safely and effectively supports COVID-19 patients means addressing both widespread clinical and operational needs,” Brandee Fetherman, MSN, RN, Morristown Medical Center director of nursing*, said. “A renovated Nursing Resource Center is vital to ensuring nursing and clinical operations teams have an effective space to make critical and life-saving decisions for our highest acuity patients.”
Thanks in part to the generosity of more than 1,500 donors who gave to the COVID-19 Support Fund, the Nursing Resource Center was renovated and expanded this September. Going forward, the space will function as a command center for care teams in both health care crises and operational crises, like weather emergencies. It has a large, digital board with the status of hospital operations, including the number of inpatients. Delineated workspaces where administrative team members and nurse managers can have private conversations have replaced the open floorplan. Expanded storage for personal protective equipment is also available. Finally, connectivity to high-speed internet, additional phones and upgraded technology are available.
Featherman, who has spent nearly 20 years at Morristown Medical Center, recognizes the importance of the community not only in projects like this one but also in providing extraordinary care.
“Through their generous contributions to the COVID-19 Support Fund, community members are central in the effort to enhance our patient-centric care at Morristown Medical Center. For that, I am truly grateful,” Fetherman said.
*Fetherman was recently promoted to the next Chief Nursing Officer for Morristown Medical Center. Read the full announcement on the Atlantic Health System website.