When I was a staff nurse, we called them "work arounds." The term was well known to generations of nurses before me, and is still utilized by nurses today. It's a great descriptor of the methods we use to overcome problems that get in the way of our delivery of great patient care. A piece of broken equipment? We figure out something else we could use instead. A policy prevents us from getting a patient something we know he needs? We circumvent it.
Often these deviations from the organization's rules benefit individual patients. However, they also contribute to an environment where the risk of making mistakes increases. In addition, they can cause real problems not to get fixed because we just "work around" them.
The current issue of NAQ is about innovation, which is change that improves current practices. We shouldn't have to do work arounds. Problems and barriers should be solved or removed. Who better than nurses (who have proven repeatedly that we get the job done in spite of obstacles) to actually conceive and implement the innovations that will do just that?
Read our nurse written articles. They remind us that we are a profession of uniquely talented developers and improvisors. We can continue to lead positive change through innovation. We've proven that over and over again, through the daily, creative work arounds that we could, and should make obsolete.
Thank you for choosing to lead,