Hospital Spotlight: Sparrow Ionia Hospital Earns Prestigious Nursing Honor

Posted on August 02, 2018

Hospital SpotlightCountless awards are given annually to celebrate nurses nationwide for their vital role in the improvement of healthcare quality and safety.

The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), the world’s largest nurse credentialing organization, recently recognized Sparrow Ionia Hospital with the Pathway to Excellence designation.

Pathway to Excellence is a rare distinction given to healthcare organizations that provide a positive work environment for nurses and foster a culture of empowerment and professional development. To date, only three Michigan hospitals have earned the prestigious title.   

Sparrow Ionia Hospital recently earned the Pathway to Excellence designation. For a healthcare facility to earn the Pathway to Excellence designation, it must meet certain eligibility criteria and complete/submit an application that consists of an organizational demographic form, organizational overview documents and elements of performance narratives.

Overall, the designation is based on six practice standards with 126 elements of performance that demonstrate robust systems on quality, safety, professional development, wellbeing, leadership, and shared decision-making.

Sparrow Ionia Hospital nurses started the Pathway to Excellence journey nearly two years before submitting the 1,500-page application Nov. 1, 2017.

Within 37 days of submission, Linda Reetz, MBA, BSN, RN, NE-BC, vice president of patient care services/chief nursing officer, Sparrow Ionia Hospital, was contacted by Megan White, senior Pathway Program analyst.

White informed her the ANCC had moved forward to the nurse survey, and no additional information was required on the application, which is uncommon.

“When we received the call stating that we didn’t have to submit any additional documentation or edits, we were speechless,” said Amanda Martin, BSN, RN, nurse manager, perioperative services, Sparrow Ionia Hospital.

The next phase of the designation process was to validate the practices described in the application. All nurses were invited to complete an independent, confidential survey.

Not only did more than 85 percent of the nurses complete the survey, they responded favorably for all elements of performance.

Following the successful completion of the entire Pathway to Excellence application process, Sparrow Ionia Hospital was notified in the spring 2018 they had become an ANCC Pathway to Excellence designated hospital.

“We’re committed to excellence at Sparrow Ionia Hospital in everything we do,” said Reetz. “This designation isn’t just a nursing designation to us. We view it as an entire hospital designation because we couldn’t do our job without the help, commitment and support of caregivers in every department. This designation is truly a testament to how dedicated our caregivers are to providing safe care for our patients, as well as a positive work environment for all.”

The Pathway to Excellence designation has been celebrated through the entire organization and across all disciplines at Sparrow Ionia Hospital.

This article was featured in the MHA Keystone Center Newsletter. To subscribe, please contact Ashley Sandborn, MHA Keystone Center communications specialist.



  • Hospital Spotlight: Sparrow Ionia Hospital Earns Prestigious Nursing Honor

Tags: MHA Keystone Center, Sparrow Ionia Hospital, nursing

Posted in: Patient Safety & Quality

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