CNL Role in Psychiatric Department
Never has it been more critical to provide high quality care in the hospital while being cost effective. The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (American Association of Colleges of Nursing [AACN], 2005) has created the Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL) role to introduce lateral integration of care for specified groups by creatively and intentionally using a variety of health care resources (AACN, 2005). The CNL’s purpose is to aid in various departments of the health care system including the psychiatric department. Although there is continuous tension between medical care and psychiatric care and choosing which is more important for a patient, the Clinical Nurse Leader is intended to bridge the gap between the two.
The goal in creating the position of Clinical Nurse Leader in inpatient psychiatric facilities is to reorient the health care system to reduce medical errors, increase patients’ safety, and improve health outcomes (Seed, Torkelson, & Karshmer, 2009). The CNL is not common in the psychiatric care setting right now because the role is fairly new (Seed, Torkelson, & Karshmer, 2009). However, the role has impacted other departments greatly and has the capacity to do the same in inpatient psychiatric care. Through describing the relevance and importance of the CNL role within the Medince/Psychiatric (Med/Psych) department, what the team would look like (the integration of the two departments), and future implications of the nursing profession, there will be a better understanding of the impact of the evidence-based model implemented through future CNL’s.
Relevance of the CNL Role to the Psychiatric Department
Although the CNL role is fairly new to the health care system, it has impacted patient outcomes since being introduced in 2005 (AACN, 2005). The CNL role was introduced generally as a response to the ever-changing health care system and to also face the challenges in providing safe, cost-effective nursing care (Moore, 2013).
Many serious challenges within the treatment of mental health care for adults and children have also been responded too with the creation of the CNL role. Traditionally, providing care for mental health in individuals has been cumbersome and costly for families (Seed, Torkelson, & Karshmer, 2009). This has resulted in inadequate care and patient outcomes for individuals across the nation (Seed, Torkelson, & Karshmer, 2009). Although there is insufficient use of the evidence-based practice model in psychiatric units, sometimes due to the lack of knowledge of mental health illnesses, there was improvement in care when there was a transformation in attitudes and current practices (Seed, Torkelson, & Karshmer, 2009). The CNL role has a focus on how we implement and execute evidence-based care, along with lateral integration of care, safety of the patient and staff, risk reduction, and keeping the cost fixed (Clinical Nurse Leader Association [CNLA], 2014). Because of the role...