Nursing Leadership

Nursing Leadership 25(4) December 2012 : 48-62.doi:10.12927/cjnl.2013.23263
Nursing Research

Linking HOBIC Measures with Length of Stay and Alternate Levels of Care: Implications for Nurse Leaders in Their Efforts to Improve Patient Flow and Quality of Care

Lianne Jeffs, Depeng Jiang, Gail Wilson, Ella Ferris, Brenda Cardiff, Mary Lanceta, Peggy White and Dorothy Pringle


Integral to understanding and leveraging performance data to monitor and drive quality improvement (QI) efforts to enhance patient care is a partnership between researchers (who generate data) and nurse executives (who lead QI efforts). In Canada, evidence-based, nursing-sensitive patient outcome data are included in the Health Outcomes for Better Information and Care (HOBIC) initiative. A descriptive study was undertaken to examine the relationships and predictive abilities of HOBIC measures with length of stay (LOS) and alternate levels of care (ALC) measures. Specifically, we were interested in determining (a) whether relationships among the HOBIC measures exist and (b) whether any of the HOBIC measures are associated with, and could subsequently be used to predict, the patient and the destination to which he or she is discharged (ALC). Our interest in understanding these relationships and predictive abilities was both research driven and practice driven, with the intent eventually to use study findings to target clinical practice and data feedback strategies. To address the two research aims, this study employed both descriptive and inferential statistical approaches with multiple analytic approaches. Study results suggest that many of the HOBIC measures are related, with a higher score in one measure corresponding to a higher score in another measure. The exception is the therapeutic self-care (TSC) measure, in which higher scores on other HOBIC measures were correlated with lower TSC scores. Associations were also found with the predictive ability of certain HOBIC measures on LOS and ALC. Our study findings call for nurse leaders to emphasize the importance to clinical nurses on hospital units of focusing their efforts on assisting patients in managing their fatigue and dyspnoea effectively; increasing their ability to engage in activities of daily living, functional status and therapeutic self-care; and preventing or minimizing pressure ulcers and falls in acute care patients. In turn, these efforts may decrease patients' LOS.



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