Introductory letter from Brooke Thornton

2016 was a year of nurses coming together across the hospital in a big way, and this led to big results.

Our wide-sweeping accomplishment in Shared Governance was launching our Peer Review Program.

To sum up, Peer Review enhances our lines of communication among nursing peers. Each nurse met with a panel of peer reviewers of their choosing to discuss successes and opportunities for growth.  The ultimate goal is ensuring we deliver the highest quality of patient care through the hands, hearts and minds of each nurse at UChicago Medicine.

A group of 58 nurses came together to organize individual Peer Review panels for more than 2,300 nurses. Through this process, nurses learned about opportunities to push forward in professional development, enhancing their clinical skills. We heard positive feedback from both the panelists and those being reviewed, and we’re seeing our quality indicators go up as a result.

Also in 2016, we made a push to enhance our Unit Based Councils (UBCs). Our combined efforts resulted in UBCs growing in numbers and strength.

In 2016, we really lived our Professional Model of Care and our Shared Governance Model. The Shared Governance model especially helped us to connect the role of our Nursing Clinical Practice Council (NCPC) chairs with our individual UBCs, opening up lines of communication. Today, every UBC has an NCPC coach, making sure the UBC chairs are supported and gaining input on how together can move the needle on our house-wide projects.

Our UBCs were also strengthened by the implementation of the UBC Scorecard, which is a template Nursing Clinical Practice Council (NCPC) chairs use to review UBC meeting minutes.  In turn, the NCPC chairs provide feedback to the UBC chairs. This helps all of us to stay accountable for quality and safety, patient satisfaction and employee satisfaction.

As I look back on 2016, I’m also proud of our Second Annual Shared Governance Discovery Showcase in November. Each UBC shared their work in improving quality. Hand hygiene, bedside rounding, flu shots, our work in reducing central line infections, bloodstream infections, CAUTI and fall prevention were in the spotlight.  UBCs also shared their learnings in team building and employee satisfaction at the Discovery Showcase. This was an exciting way for our UBCs to share their work, and raise a sense of pride at the bedside, in nursing research and education and as leaders in our health care community.

These are just a few ways our nurses came together to make big changes at our medical center and beyond. Learn more through our Nursing Annual Report about how we support each other to provide the highest quality care at the forefront of medicine.

Brooke Thornton


Special Procedures Nurse, Pediatric Sedation Nursing Practice Council Past Chair

Brooke Thornton

Brooke Thornton, BSN, RN, CPN
Special Procedures Nurse, Pediatric Sedation Nursing Practice Council Past Chair