What is a Nursing Flowchart?
A nursing flowchart is a tool used by nurse professionals to define and improve their communication process among various staff. It’s also a decision-making framework or workflow to provide holistic care and proper management to patients. It can also be used by other non-medical persons who are in need of nursing services.
How to Create a Nursing Flowchart
According to Miller & Zois, LLC law firm, communication negligence tends to be the most common among nurse practitioners. This accounts for almost 30% number of malpractices against nurses. This massive percentage can be reduced by designing an effective communication tool.
Creating a well-defined nursing flowchart will improve the communication process among nurses in various departments. This will outline the hierarchy in the nursing unit and identify the right authority to report any incident. Keep reading to have a definite idea of how you can design an effective flowchart for your nursing department.
1. Choose a Structure
An icon or symbol could mean a lot of things in a flowchart. You can use various shapes and sizes to present your data. It can either be a circle, square, rectangle, or a diamond that will depict the flow of your nursing process. The important thing here is you have to ensure that your structure can easily be followed by the reader to avoid confusion. Hence, you have to be consistent when using these icons.
2. Be Organized
When our thoughts aren’t organized, communication problem arises. And this is what we’re trying to avoid when someone reads our flowchart. So, as much as possible, limit the number of shapes, words, and flow lines you’re going to use. The simpler the better. For complex flowcharts, you can refer to our various sample chart templates to get ideas.
3. Avoid A 2-Paged or More Flowchart
Having a medical flowchart with various pages will make it difficult to understand and read. Put everything on one page. However, arrange it in a way that it won’t look overly cluttered. Otherwise, you’re readers will be really confused. Make the flow easy on the eyes to convey your message successfully.
4. Adhere To A Specific Direction
If you start from up, then end at the bottom. If you prefer to start from left, then your ending must be on the right side. Don’t go circling around the whole page and make your flowchart look like it was run over by hundreds of chickens. Of course, it’s not mandatory. You can decide how you want the data to flow in your flowchart. What you only have to remember is to use a direction that is easy to follow.
5. Ask A Colleague
What does this mean? It’s simple. After you’ve done everything, let a nurse colleague read your drafted flowchart. If he/she understands it very well, then you’ve made an effective flowchart. If the flowchart made him/her confused, solicit opinion. You can ask your colleague what made it confusing. After that, make adjustments and you’re done with your department flowchart!