Patient Care Delivery and Outcomes

Family Centered Care

The delivery of nursing care to children at Nicklaus Children's Hospital is guided by principles of Family-Centered Care. The Nursing Department believes that each child is unique and an integral part of the family unit. Families are involved throughout the course of their child's care and are considered valued partners in the delivery of care. At all times, the nursing team strives to respect the dignity, values, religious and cultural beliefs of children and families.

All aspects of nursing care at Nicklaus Children's Hospital revolve around the concept of incorporating the parent and child's needs into the care of the child. Nicklaus Children's Hospital recognizes that supporting the needs of the patient, their family and their caregivers facilitates their involvement in the planning and delivery of care.

Nicklaus Children's Hospital accomplishes this by utilizing the following:

Comfort Model

The Nursing Department’s Conceptual Framework is Katharine Kolcaba’s Comfort Model. Nurses at Nicklaus Children's Hospital provide comforting measures for patients with an expectation of positive outcomes as described in the Comfort Model. The Comfort Model reinforces the need to comfort nurses. Dr. Katherine Kolcaba’s Comfort theory is embedded within Nicklaus Children's Hospital and its employees. Dr. Kolcaba addresses comfort utilizing the four contexts of holistic human experience listed below:

  • Breaks
  • Gym, healthy lifestyle incentives
  • Free massage sessions
  • Employee Assistance Program
  • Nursing support groups for new nurses
  • Leadership support and encouragement
  • iCREATE Way - our organizational culture
  • Adequate staff and resources to perform job duties

EBP/Outcome-Driven Practice

Nicklaus Children's Hospital believes a critical component of the evaluation of existing nursing practices is the acceptance that nursing is an ongoing learning experience that must be constantly evaluated and adapted based on current evidence-based best practices.

The focus on patient quality and outcome measurements of continuous improvement is integrated into nursing practice and the foundation for improving patient outcomes.

The Nursing Department establishes position statements and standards of practice in alignment with the ANA and Society of Pediatric Nurses. Assuring safety is principal in the delivery of quality patient care. Measures to assure safety are promoted and supported by technology such as Bar Coding for Medication Safety and wireless phones which connect the patient or doctor directly to their nurse. Ownership of the processes which promote patient safety and educational components based on the JCAHO National Patient Safety Goals is fundamental for all staff.

We are committed to excellence in practice through nursing autonomy and the utilization of critical thinking. We encourage creativity, teamwork, and patient advocacy in achieving optimal outcomes for each individual and family. Our scope of practice extends beyond the walls of the institution into the community, through Nicklaus Children's Hospital's commitment to the promotion of health and wellness.

The Nursing Research department is led by the Director of Nursing Research who works to expand and advance nursing research and evidence-based practice throughout the organization.

Ethics & Compliance

Nicklaus Children's Hospital has established a compliance department and program to advance the prevention, detection, and correction of violations of federal, state or local law or regulations governing health care and human services programs by employees, contractors or agents. The compliance staff is available as valuable resources in decision-making processes or to answer questions regarding the ethical conduct of practice at Nicklaus Children's Hospital. The Interdisciplinary Bioethics Committee is a forum that is consulted upon to hear complex ethical issues and provides directives for the healthcare team to address and to provide best practice to the ill and hospitalized child.

Magnet Standards

The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) Magnet Recognition Program recognizes healthcare organizations such as Nicklaus Children's Hospital for exceptional quality in patient care, nursing excellence and innovations in nursing practice. The Nursing Department at Nicklaus Children's Hospital strives to continuously meet and exceed these standards providing high-quality patient care with improved patient outcomes and patient satisfaction.


iCREATE Way is a system-wide training program developed with staff input reflecting expected work behaviors and the creation of a positive work environment as well as a positive patient/family experience. The organizational values and guiding behaviors of collaboration, responsibility, empowerment, advocacy, transformation, and empathy are discussed with demonstrations on how to practice these behaviors in the workplace. The iCREATE training empowers nurses to be better professionals that will in turn provide better care; therefore, further improving customer satisfaction.


Safety, Opportunity, Attitude & Responsibility (S.O.A.R) which was previously known as Life Wings ™ was an initiative originally started at Nicklaus Children's Hospital in 2009 to improve patient safety.

The emphasis of this program is enhancing communication, developing checklists to ensure standardization of processes (eliminating as much human error opportunities as possible) and creating enhanced teamwork among all staff members, ultimately improving patient safety.

Horizon Nurse Residency Program

In 2010, Nicklaus Children’s Hospital created the Horizon Nurse Residency Program, an ANCC accredited evidence-based nurse residency program for new graduate nurses. In 2014, the Horizon Nurse Residency Program was reformatted to include an extensive orientation that allows nurses to effectively transition into their new role as a registered nurse in an acute care pediatric setting. Training consists of didactic classes, skill training, simulation labs, unit-specific training with a preceptor, and self-directed computer modules. The program offers training within hospital units including the ICU setting, hematology-oncology, Emergency Department, and the ICU Float Pool, with the duration varying by unit of hire. The Horizon Nurse Residency Program prepares graduate nurses in every way possible to create a competent and happy workforce.

Transitional Nursing Program

In the 2016, the Transitional Nursing Program was developed to successfully onboard experienced nurses without acute care pediatric nursing experience. The program was created in alignment with key attributes from the Horizon Nurse Residency Program, which has improved outcomes such as increased retention and engagement. The Transitional Nursing Program training utilizes various educational modalities such as didactic classes, skill training, simulation labs, unit-specific training with a preceptor, competency-aligned performance, and self-directed online modules. Due to the transition nurses’ previous knowledge and experience, these nurses have a shorter clinical orientation time. The Transitional Nursing Program qualifications include all licensed practical nurses, any registered nurse with less than 1 year of RN experience, and any RN without pediatric acute care experience. The Transitional Nursing Program prepares experienced nurses in every way possible to create a competent and happy workforce.