Penn Medicine News Blog Archive: Nursing

What Nurses Wish Patients Knew

By Greg Richter | April 13, 2016 | Comments Checking-records

Good communication is essential to successful therapeutic relationships. This is all the more evident when talking about the interaction between patients and nurses. The exchange of information not only can lead to better compassionate care and outcomes, but it also puts patients at the center of the clinical decision making... Read more

A Tradition of Nursing Excellence

By Sally Sapega | January 25, 2016 | Comments Diane lawson with doctor cropped

Penn Medicine recently created the Distinguished Nurse Clinician Academy. Its members are chosen for their exceptional clinical knowledge and interprofessional skills as well as a passion for their work … at the bedside. The Academy’s goal is to spread this level of clinical excellence through UPHS as well as into... Read more

Penn’s Tiniest Patients Celebrate Halloween in the Intensive Care Nursery (photos)

By Greg Richter | November 2, 2015 | Comments

On Friday, nurses, family, and friends celebrated Halloween a day early in the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania’s Intensive Care Nursery (ICN). Although many of these babies were born with very low birth weight or health problems and need special attention before they can go home, their parents and... Read more

The Professional Image of Nursing

By Olivia Fermano | October 13, 2015 | Comments PAH SON 1940

Since 1999, nurses have topped the annual Gallop poll that rates 11 professions on honesty and ethical standards, with the exception of 2001, when firefighters were recognized for their tremendous contributions during and after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. That’s higher than medical doctors, police officers and clergy. Nurses in front... Read more

A Trifecta of Meaningful Recognition

By Olivia Fermano | July 23, 2015 | Comments Lantern Group Shot

Year after year, Gallop polls reflect that Americans rate nurses as having the highest honesty and ethical standards of all professions. However, being so well-respected doesn’t mean working without challenges. Nurses deal with life and death issues, critically ill patients and worried family members – on a daily basis. One... Read more

A Very Special Tea for Two

By Olivia Fermano | May 27, 2015 | Comments 5 Preston Tea_1

You can change someone’s world with one simple act of kindness. Earlier this month Pennsylvania Hospital (PAH) maternity nurse, Lynne Dever, RNC, was going about her work day when she noticed her patient – Alison Paymer of Philadelphia – was in great distress. Other than being pregnant with twins, Paymer’s... Read more

Making Ethics Front and Center in Nursing Practice

By Greg Richter | May 6, 2015 | Comments Nurse

Nurses have some of the broadest roles among medical professionals. They work in many aspects of clinical care, advocate for better health in their patients and communities, conduct academic research, educate patients and their families on health conditions and options (and how to cope when an ailment doesn't go as... Read more

Measles Outbreaks and Vaccinations: Does it Change Anything?

By Steve Graff | April 10, 2015 | Comments Vaccines

In most communities in the United States today, the measles vaccination rate is a relatively high 94 percent. But some areas fall short of that average for various reasons: lack of awareness, lack of access, and a growing vaccine refusal movement. With one of the lowest vaccination rates, Pennsylvania currently... Read more

An Approach to Enhancing Health Care Quality

By John Shea | December 4, 2014 | Comments image from

In the last decade, quality improvement and patient safety have risen very high among the priorities facing caregivers in the United States – and at Penn Medicine itself. The problem, as articulated in a recent article in Academic Medicine, is that even after national reports have noted the critical need... Read more

Don’t Let the Empty Hallways Fool You!

By Sally Sapega | November 28, 2014 | Comments HUP at night

Ever wonder what’s life really like for the Penn Medicine employees who care for patients while most of us are asleep? We were curious so we dropped into the nighttime shifts at three Penn Medicine hospitals to find out. On first glance, the hospitals seem almost deserted at night. The... Read more

Hope Rings Eternal for Patients at the Abramson Cancer Center Pennsylvania Hospital

By Olivia Fermano | June 26, 2014 | Comments 6 Schieft Hope Bell-pt

In 1733, the English poet Alexander Pope penned the famous line, “Hope springs eternal in the human breast,” in "An Essay on Man, Epistle I." Over three and a half centuries later, Pope’s words still resonate with profound meaning. No matter the circumstances, humankind continues to have the capacity to... Read more

A New Focus on Elder Health Care

By Sally Sapega | June 2, 2014 | Comments image from

GRNs Krista Walsh (r.) and Colleen Hogan walk with patient John Fitzpatrick to help him prevent losing physical strength during hospitalization. Hospitalization has a greater cognitive and physical impact on geriatric patients than on those who are younger. Indeed, more than 40 percent of the elderly suffer from delirium while... Read more

PPMC's Take Your Child to Work Day 2014 — in photos!

By Robert Press | May 9, 2014 | Comments

Penn Presbyterian Medical Center (PPMC)’s annual Take Your Child to Work Day — wherein hundreds of children are led through various stations in the hospital, learning about the inner workings and interesting aspects of a daily job at the hospital — fell on April 24 this year, and featured stations... Read more

Leape's Conclusion: Health Care's "Culture of Disrespect"

By John Shea | April 18, 2014 | Comments image from

Lucian Leape, MD There are not many people who could address a gathering of medical professionals associated with one of the most highly regarded academic health systems in the country and talk to them about their part in a pervasive “culture of disrespect.” Talk to them, that is, and not... Read more

From Red Carpet to Canvas

By Olivia Fermano | March 17, 2014 | Comments LaryCampbell&BethDunn - Full

Creative Nurses Care Beyond the Bedside “It takes a special type of person to be a nurse.” If I had a dollar for how many times I’ve heard someone say that… It is an expression I believe to be true. It also seems to me it just isn’t enough for... Read more

Grand Rounds Teaches Nurses How to Care for Veterans “From War to Home”

By Greg Richter | February 13, 2014 | Comments image from

Earlier this month, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (HUP) Nursing Grand Rounds hosted “From War to Home: Through the Veteran’s Lens.” Nurses are indeed on the front lines of transitions to civilian life for many of our nation’s veterans, and those braving wintry conditions to Stemmler Hall were treated... Read more

A Day in the Life at Penn Medicine

By Robert Press | December 16, 2013 | Comments

Each autumn, the University of Pennsylvania showcases its myriad activities — scholarly and otherwise — in a photo project called A Day in the Life. One day a year, from 12:00 a.m. to 11:59 p.m., everybody at UPenn is invited to submit photographs of what they're up to at any...

Do Patients Really Understand? The Push to Eliminate Health Illiteracy

By Sally Sapega | October 4, 2013 | Comments Health_literacy

Inadequate health literacy is a significant concern in today’s health-care environment. Indeed, more than one-third of Americans don’t understand the basic medical information that’s needed to make informed health-care decisions. This knowledge gap can have serious repercussions: poor medication adherence, increased mortality, and increased hospital readmissions and trips to the... Read more

A Purr-fect Match: “Pet the Pooch” Program Reunites Cancer Patient with Kitten after Weeks of Treatment

By Greg Richter | September 24, 2013 | Comments

HUP’s “Pet the Pooch” program brings adoptable dogs and kittens from the Pennsylvania SPCA to help soothe employee stress. In their latest visit, one lucky kitten found a new home. When two-year-old CHOP patient Sophie Vincent (from Charlottesville, VA) passed through with her mother on the way to radiation treatment...

A Look Back, in Photos: The Past Two Months or So Around Penn Medicine

By Robert Press | September 4, 2013 | Comments

Though my Penn Medicine ID card says 'Digital Communications Editor,' I've worn a few hats here — including in-house photographer. Because it's an aspect of the job that I love, I'd like to share some of the photos I've taken over the past month or so, giving readers a glimpse... Read more

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