Last updated: July 25. 2013 9:13AM - 284 Views

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Frank Lewis

PDT Staff Writer

A crowd made up of Southern Ohio Medical Center employees spilled out into the next room and then off into the hallways Wednesday as Vice President of Nursing Claudia Burchett received a phone call from the Commission on Magnet, the highest level of distinction for nursing excellence.

“It is my high honor and privilege to officially notify you that the Commission on Magnet has unanimously voted to credential Southern Ohio Medical Center as a Magnet credentialed organization, congratulations Claudia,” The chairman of that commission said.

The rooms erupted into an applause.

“I just want to thank all of you,” Burchett said. “We have really come a long way as an organization. And while this recognition has been bestowed upon us by the American Nurses Credentially Center, it is really an organizational award, because each and every one of us here has an active part in doing what we are ultimately here for, and that is grow and provide patient care for every possible patient that we can.”

Though the honor is the second of it’s type SOMC has received, CEO Randy Arnett says the honor never gets old.

“We are now in the top six percent of hospitals in the world. That’s a change. It used to be in America, now the Magnet Commission surveys hospitals that apply anywhere in the world. And what it means to us is obviously that it’s the highest award you can get for nursing care, nursing teamwork, anywhere in the world. Everybody who has ever been a nurse or is working with a nurse, they all know what Magnet means.”

There are five main components through which Magnet hospitals are measured: transformational leadership, structural empowerment, exemplary professional practice and new knowledge, innovations and improvements. To receive re-designation, SOMC submitted a document that was more than 5,500 pages long and 20 inches tall detailing how the hospital achieved excellence in all five areas.

There are 24 hospitals with such designation in Ohio and fewer than 400 in the U.S.

“If you can work in a place that is a Magnet hospital, then you know you are giving top quality care, and these guys know that,” Arnett said. “I am so proud of them.”

Frank Lewis may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 252, or at flewis@civitasmedia.com. For breaking news, follow Frank on Twitter @FrankLewisPDT.

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