Jillaine Pierce became the first Certified Ambulatory Care Nurse at Mercy Health Physician Partners, on March 1, 2014.
Ambulatory care focuses on outpatient treatment. It revolves around nursing and health sciences, applying clinical expertise that is rooted in the nursing process. Pierce’s primary focus is facilitating a smooth safe transition from hospital back to primary care, with patient/family education entwined in that. This helps keep the patient and primary care physician informed and concentrated on the same goals after the patient leaves the hospital.
Pierce is a Transitions Coordinator with the Transitions Care program. This program incorporates a registered nurse as the primary caregiver and relies heavily on the foundation that a transition in care involves a comprehensive plan, chronic disease management, and acknowledgment of the patient’s goals, preferences, and clinical status.
She is employed by Mercy Health Physician Partners and works with six practices in the Grand Rapids area. She sees their patients when they are in the hospital. She selects patients to follow based on their chronic disease. While they are inpatients, she meets with them, explains the programs, and schedules follow-up appointments and testing.
After they are discharged, Pierce calls them within 24-48 hours to review medications and discharge instructions, disease management, and answer questions. Then she communicates everything to the patient’s primary care provider.
“I chose to become certified after talking with my manager and setting goals for the year,” said Pierce. “Certification attests to the commitment of nurses to go above and beyond.”
National Certified Nurses Day is recognized on March 19. Mercy Health Saint Mary’s is proud to have nearly 150 certified nurses in many specialties, including neuroscience, orthopedics, oncology and gerontology.
Under Magnet®-designation, certifications are recognized and highlighted. They demonstrate the desire that nurses have to provide high quality care to patients. While patients may not always understand the meaning behind certifications, they can be sure they are getting the best care possible.