Nursing management is a branch of the nursing field which focuses on managing nurses and patient care standards. An effective nursing management program is critical for most facilities which use nurses, such as hospitals, clinics, and residential care facilities. People in this field often have both nursing and management experience, and they have typically received special training to prepare them for employment as managers and supervisors.
People in the field of nursing management can supervise nurses and nursing programs in a variety of ways. Some supervise entire facilities, delegating duties to individual departmental supervisors. When a manager looks after the nursing staff at an entire hospital, issues like consistency, standardized procedures, transfer protocols, and cooperation are often an important part of the job.
Individual supervisors handle specific departments, such as radiology or the intensive care unit. These nursing managers are responsible for maintaining staff in their departments, assigning nurses to specific cases, and overseeing patient care to ensure that it remains at a high standard. They may also be involved in the creation of nursing plans for specific patients, coordinating the efforts of the nursing team to keep everyone abreast of developments in the patient's condition and medical care.
Pursuing a career in nursing management usually starts with going to nursing school to acquire clinical skills before attending additional management training. Being able to understand the work of nursing is extremely important for a nursing manager, and many people in this field have experience as working nurses which they utilize when they make management decisions. Management training addresses specific issues such as dealing with employees, setting behavioral standards, and handling the legal issues associated with supervising people at work in a hospital environment.
It is extremely helpful to have a good idea for detail and an ability to work well with others for a career in nursing management. Nursing managers are responsible for the activities of the nurses under their supervision, and they must be able to interact with patients, families, and other hospital staff in a wide variety of situations. Having an eye for detail is also very valuable, as is the patience to do a great deal of routine paperwork.
The term “nursing management” is also sometimes used to refer to a nursing plan, a detailed outline of the nursing interventions which will be used to treat a specific patient. In this sense, the term refers to assessing a patient's condition, formulating an approach to treatment, enacting the treatment, and following up on the results of the treatment.