NCH is part of Endeavor Health

Learn more

For Nurses

Nursing Annual Report 2019

About our Chief Nursing Officer

Eileen Gillespie, R.N., DNP

Chief Nursing Officer, Executive Vice President
Northwest Community Healthcare

Eileen Gillespie, R.N., DNP, is the Chief Nursing Officer and Executive Vice President at Northwest Community Healthcare. In her role, Eileen leads the vision for nursing and provides oversight, expertise and leadership to ensure the delivery of high-quality nursing service in an environment that promotes professional nursing practice. As a doctorally prepared nurse, Eileen has served as Chief Nursing Officer in several hospitals and health systems across the Chicago area. She has also been a consultant to hospitals and health systems across the country. She is recognized for her expertise in Health System Operations, Performance Improvement and Nursing Leadership.

Eileen received her Bachelor of Science in nursing from the University of Illinois Chicago, a master’s degree in nursing from Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, Illinois, and her doctorate in nursing from Rush University in Chicago. Eileen has been a member of several professional nursing organizations, including The American Association of Critical Care Nurses as well as the American Organization for Nursing Leaders. She is well recognized as a speaker on nursing and has presented at numerous regional and national professional meetings. Eileen has authored several publications on Nursing, including innovative approaches to workforce management and creating community-based systems of care.

NCH Welcomes New Nursing Leaders

Kelsey Knutty, R.N., MPH

Executive Director, Community-Based Care

Kelsey brings a level of expertise to NCH which focuses on care across the continuum. Community-Based Care focuses on engaging the NCH community to better align coordinating structures that support the care our patients receive. Structures include supporting access to care to align goals of care, safe and timely transitions between care settings, and leveraging and coordinating available NCH services and resources. Outcome goals, associated with an aligned Community-Based Care, are to improve quality of care, reduce the cost of care, enhance the patient experience and retain patients within the NCH System.

Teresa Kisch, PhD, MSN, R.N., NEA-BC, CMSRN

Nursing Excellence and Magnet Program Director

NCH is a Magnet organization that first became Magnet recognized in 2006. The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) provides oversight for the Magnet Recognition Program®. The program is considered the gold standard for recognition of nursing excellence. Research indicates that Magnet hospitals have better clinical outcomes and patient satisfaction, as well as a higher percentage of satisfied RNs. As a Magnet organization, NCH provides its nurses the resources for practice to deliver the highest quality care to its patients.

NCH began work in 2019 to submit documentation to support our 4th Magnet recognition. The document will be submitted to ANCC in February 2020. The document will highlight our work since our last designation. The 2019 Magnet criteria includes a larger emphasis on our nurses in ambulatory settings, which reflects changes in healthcare trends. The various examples we will submit outline work that represents transformational leadership, structural empowerment, exemplary professional practice and new knowledge, innovations and improvements. The greatest focus of Magnet criteria is our empirical outcomes. In other words, our data that represents improvement in performance. We submit data for our clinical indicators (patient falls, HAPI, etc.), patient satisfaction and nursing satisfaction. We also submit examples that demonstrate improvement in effective care delivery and efficiency.

In October 2019 NCH welcomed a new Magnet Program Director, Teresa Kisch, PhD, MSN, RN, NEA-BC, CMSRN. Teresa joined NCH with various leadership experience, including having been a Magnet Program Director at another regional hospital.

NCH Shared Governance Model

A team of more than 20 nurses, representing various nursing roles and departments, came together in 2019 as the Shared Governance Workgroup. The group was led by Phyllis Cerone, Connie Selsky and Kirsten Howe. Their purpose was to review the current shared governance model and develop a proposal to redesign the model. The new model will ensure clinical nurse involvement and provide leadership opportunities for them by serving as council chairs.  

Shared governance is a structure whereby professional nurses work collaboratively to support both front-line nurses and nursing leaders to share in the decision-making. The shared governance structure provides a forum for nurses to actively share in the accountability, responsibility and authority for practice and care delivery. The team developed a new structure that includes four organizational councils – Nursing Practice, Operations/Work Environment, Professional Development and Evidence-Based Practice/Research. The chairs of these councils meet routinely as the Nursing Coordinating Quality Council. Each department will have unit-based shared governance through their Nursing Practice Council and Operations/Work Environment Council.

The new structure and meeting schedule rolled out in October 2019. Each council has a clinical nurse and manager, or educator, serving as chair and co-chair. Each unit will determine what their unit-level councils will look like and the managers will work with their team to decide which nurses will serve on organizational and/or unit-based councils.

NCH Professional Practice Model

What is a professional practice model (PPM)?
A professional practice model guides our nursing practice. It describes how nurses practice, collaborate, communicate and professionally develop to provide the highest-quality care for the patients across the organization. The PPM considers professional nursing values, care delivery, shared decision-making and recognition within a framework typically based on nursing theory.   

Why do we need a PPM?
The NCH PPM defines the foundation and components of professional nursing practice. The PPM aligns and integrates nursing practice with NCH’s mission, values and philosophy of nursing.

In 2019, the department of nursing approved an updated professional practice model. The Clinical Nursing Leadership Council (CNLC) evaluated the PPM and decided to use Dr. Joanne Duffy’s Quality Caring Model as the framework to update NCH’s model. The council used a structured approach to the evaluation to define nursing values, envision all nurses practicing within those values, leverage resources available at NCH and develop the model by identifying changes needed to ensure it successfully guides nursing practice at NCH.

The model includes four primary nursing values – Caring, Communication, Quality/Safety and Team. Success of the model will be demonstrated through various nursing metrics including clinical outcomes, patient satisfaction data, nursing satisfaction data and ongoing professional development of nurses (BSN and certification rates). It will also utilize organizational metrics such as readmission rate, length of stay and quality recognition (Leapfrog and Top Hospital ratings). The updated NCH PPM supports our nurses to achieve optimal outcomes for patients and themsleves.

DAISY Award Program Refreshed for Meaningful Recognition

NCH has partnered with the DAISY Foundation for nursing recognition since 2011. In 2019, a team of nurses reviewed the current NCH DAISY program with the charge to make recognition through the program both meaningful and timely.

The team first focused on making the award program meaningful. They determined the criteria for nominations as either DAISY Patient Recognition or DAISY Outstanding Patient Experience. Those nominations qualifying as Patient Recognition include the nurse’s name and/or a brief statement recognizing the nurse. Nominations qualifying as Outstanding Patient Experience meet one or more of the following criteria:

  • Aligns with NCH CARES (demonstrating commitment through an extraordinary, positive and caring attitude)
  • Demonstrates exemplary clinical skills
  • Demonstrates integrity
  • Significantly impacts the patient’s and/or family’s experience

The refreshed DAISY program includes updated nomination forms. Nurses receiving a Patient Recognition nomination receive a certificate of recognition. Nurses receiving an Outstanding Patient Experience nomination receive a certificate of recognition and a DAISY nominee pin. One nurse is selected each month as the NCH DAISY nurse. He or she receives the DAISY Award certificate, DAISY Award pin and DAISY Award statuette. The nurse’s team celebrates their honor at a unit-based gathering. All DAISY nurses will be recognized quarterly in the employee newsletter and will be invited to the Leadership Forum.

Department Updates

Download the Department Updates to learn everything that happened in nursing at NCH in 2019.