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Change is not the enemy

Paul Sutherland | Digital Vision | Thinkstock

This past week was ‘go-live’ for our electronic charting system and the roll out of the electronic physician order entry. Being a casual employee can and will be hard to adjust to the new system, since I’m not there on a consistent basis. The whole ‘if you don’t use it, you lose it’ adage rings so true for me. Due to many other things that had nothing to do with this new system, my 8 hour shift turned into an 11 hour day (yeah.. one of those days).

Que sera, sera.

My shift made it the 4th day the hospital was using the new system, and I must say I was duly impressed by all that were part of it. I was really expecting such a disaster, with everyone up in arms, tempers flaring and emotions running wild (then again I wasn’t there on the first day). It was quite the opposite. And in fact, people were chipping in where ever needed at any given time.

Nurses seem to hate change, even though change is the only thing ‘common’ in our profession. Our profession and its professionals have been ‘changing’ so much over the past decade or so, you’d think we’d be used to it by now? For some strange reason there are still some out there that get down right mean and stubborn whenever that animal named change is even mentioned.

I was talking with one of the resource team members (they were present just for help with the new system). She was commenting on how great our facility has been with this new system roll out. She mentioned that some facilities get down right ‘ugly’ with you, place blame, yell, scream, and it becomes a horrible experience for everyone.

I for one am proud that our facility faced the challenge with our chins up. Yeah, at times it was frustrating. Of course it was a bumpy road. And I’m expecting there will be a ton of wrinkles that will need ironed out. But to fight the inevitable, making your day and others miserable simply because you don’t like the change, or don’t agree with the change is just a waste of your time.

Over the years, health care systems have learned from their mistakes. Now instead of dropping something new in your lap (referring to something this big), they gradually and gently introduce it to you in pieces and small segments. Over an extended period of usually three to six months they expose you to the newness and do their best to lessen your fear and anger.

Change is not the enemy, change is the one thing that keeps us ahead of the curve. It’s how we can continue to advance and enhance our knowledge, our skills, and the services we provide to the one person that matters the most, our patients.

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