The Value of Nursing Care Coordination
A WHITE PAPER OF THE AMERICAN NURSES ASSOCIATION
Patient-centered care coordination is a core professional standard and competency for all nursing practice. Registered nurses understand that they are an essential component of the care coordination process to improve patients' care outcomes, facilitate effective inter-professional collaboration, and decrease costs across patient populations and health care settings. What is well known to registered nurses, however, has not often been recognized outside of nursing. This white paper was initiated to highlight both the qualitative and quantitative accomplishments of registered nurses in care coordination.
The value of registered nurses in care coordination roles has been demonstrated in numerous health care reform initiatives focused on integrative service delivery. Nurses design, implement, and participate in care coordination projects and practices that seek to improve patient outcomes and decrease costs, frequently demonstrating the effectiveness of nurse-led and patient-centered care coordination.
The focus of this white paper is on recent reports and studies that have documented results involving registered nurses in care coordination. While the results derive from a wide variety of settings and diverse patient populations, the conclusions reached are strikingly similar. Authors observed the following:
Reductions in emergency department visits
Noticeable decreases in medication costs
Reduced inpatient charges
Reduced overall charges
Average savings per patient
Significant increases in survival with fewer readmissions
Lower total annual Medicare costs for those beneficiaries participating in pilot projects compared to control groups
Increased patient confidence in self-managing care
Improved quality of care
Increased safety of older adults during transition from an acute care setting to the home Improved clinical outcomes and reduced costs
Improved patient satisfaction overall