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UnityPoint Health president & CEO, Kevin Vermeer, Answers Questions about Nursing Excellence

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UnityPoint Health president & CEO, Kevin Vermeer, Answers Questions about Nursing Excellence

Kevin Vermeer, UnityPoint Health president and CEO, talks about both the competency and compassion nurses demonstrate daily.

Nurses are the frontline of patient care, often serving as the first point of contact for patients and families. How are your nurses taking charge in the way they deliver care?

Not only do our nurses demonstrate compassion, the skill and expertise they exude speaks to the science behind their work. At UnityPoint Health, our nursing leaders continually remind us that exceptional nursing is backed by science; the inspiration for nurses to do what they do comes from the patients they serve. We encourage and support our nurses to take it upon themselves to make positive changes in care delivery and develop new and better care procedures.

How do UnityPoint Health nurses embody excellence?

We know that excellence doesn’t happen in a vacuum. Individuals excel in a positive work environment with respectful colleagues and wise mentors. Regardless of the setting, whether at the hospital, clinic or at home, our nurses collaborate in order to excel as one team with one goal – Best Outcome Every Patient, Every Time. It’s this mentality and teamwork that positions our patients as the true winners. They are the recipients of excellent nursing care.

Nationally, health care organizations are experiencing a nursing shortage. How has UnityPoint Health addressed this?

The first and best way is to retain the talent we have. To that end, each year, we have our staff complete an employee engagement survey that lets us know how we’re doing. We value the feedback from these and use the results to guide our strategies year to year. Our goal is to create an environment where staff and nurses want a career. In addition, we’re always looking for top nursing talent to join our organization. We do this through our schools and other academic programs. Often, our first recruitment opportunity is an exceptional student experience. We welcome future nurses.

What message would you like to share with all the UnityPoint Health nurses?

Thank you for making a difference every day. While the hours can be long and the situations can be challenging, we appreciate how you approach your work with grace and dignity. You truly touch each of our patients and families, and your dedication to improving their lives doesn’t go unnoticed.