Specialized Inpatient Nursing at UW Hospital
"I love the people that I work with. The staff is wonderful and we support each other." Rebecca, RN
The Acute Care Unit is comprised of 21 medical beds with acutely ill patients who have a variety of co-morbidities that impact their primary diagnosis, medical, and nursing plan of care. Some patients suffer from multisystem disease processes that require specialized nursing care with the potential for more intensive monitoring and care when unforeseen complications arise. The unit also specializes in care of patients with Cystic Fibrosis. Progressive Care is an eight-bed unit for patients with fragile hemodynamic stability and requires an increased level of nursing care and surveillance which prevents them from transitioning to a medical unit. Some patients transition from a critical care unit directly to Progressive Care to promote continuity by allowing specialized monitoring, treatments and nursing care to continue without jeopardizing quality and outcomes. Nurses embrace the Primary Nurse Model of Care and are all knowledgeable and competent in providing care to both acute medical/progressive care patients. In addition to being proficient in noninvasive and invasive cardiac monitoring and certified in Advanced Cardiac Life Support, nurses pursue specialty certification in medical-surgical and progressive care nursing.
Nurses on this 28-bed unit meet the daily challenges of caring for a wide array of medical patients including subspecialties such as immunology, rheumatology, endocrinology and geriatrics. This provides a unique opportunity for nurses, as well, to work within a collaborative framework. Patients often have multiple diagnoses. Some of the primary disease processes seen include pneumonia, COPD, CHF, AIDS, acute and chronic renal failure, cellulitis, gastrointestinal bleeds, deep vein thrombosis, and diabetes mellitus. Telemetry monitoring can be provided for all patients. There is a keen awareness of the psychosocial issues faced by patients and families as they cope with chronic illness. Discharge planning is an important part of the patient's care and nurse’s collaboration with case managers and social work is an essential part of this.
Nurses on this 18-bed unit meet the daily challenges of caring for a wide array of medical patients including subspecialties such as immunology, rheumatology, endocrinology, and geriatrics. This provides a unique opportunity for nurses, as well, to work within a collaborative framework. Patients often have multiple diagnoses. Some of the primary disease processes seen include pneumonia, COPD, CHF, AIDS, acute and chronic renal failure, cellulitis, gastrointestinal bleeds, deep vein thrombosis, and diabetes mellitus. Telemetry monitoring can be provided for all patients. There is a keen awareness of the psychosocial issues faced by patients and families as they cope with chronic illness. Discharge planning is an important part of the patient's care and nurse’s collaboration with case managers and social work is an essential part of this.
Family Medicine is a fast-paced acute medical service seeing patients admitted by the Family Medicine service as well as patients from other services, when space allows. Patient diagnoses might include rule out MI, pneumonia and other infections, asthma exacerbation, GI problems and other acute medical illnesses on this 18-bed unit. The Forensics Unit is a 10-bed secure nursing unit and provides care for adult male patients who are inmates in the correctional system of the State of
Nurses on this 21-bed CARF accredited unit provide complex care to individuals who require acute rehabilitation following a major event such as a spinal cord injury, stroke, brain injury, amputation, and multiple trauma. Nurses are involved in managing the medically complex issues and coordinating appropriate treatments to prepare patients for discharge. Rehabilitation nurses are an integral part of a multidisciplinary rehabilitation team whose goal is to restore maximum functional independence for patients.
The Clinical and Translation Research Core nursing staff provides comprehensive clinical research coordination and patient care in a collaborative multidisciplinary approach. The inpatient-outpatient unit of 11 inpatient beds, a spirometry room and five-bay treatment center is complemented by additional research services at American Family Children’s Hospital and neonatal research at Meriter Park Hospital. The center is funded by a grant from the National Institutes of Health. Nursing combines expertise in care of subjects enrolled in clinical trials with medical/surgical nursing skill. Examples of research include studies related to asthma/allergy, hematology/oncology, Alzheimer’s disease, behavioral/psychiatric, and endocrine and metabolic system, rheumatology, and sleep disorders.
- Heart and Vascular: The Heart and Vascular Progressive Care Unit is a 15-bed telemetry unit that cares for patients admitted to the vascular surgery, medical cardiology or cardiac and thoracic surgery services. The unit has general and intermediate care beds, and provides a wide range of nursing care for patients with acute and chronic disease processes that require medical or surgical treatment, including cardiac catheterization. HVC Progressive is the home of Vascular Surgery, which treats aneurysm repair, arterial endarterectomies and peripheral vascular occlusive disease including bypass grafting and percutaneous transluminal angioplasty. Nurses are experienced and competent to care for a blend of patients, including those with surgical and medical cardiology related diagnoses.
- Inpatient Cardiology Intermediate Care: The Cardiology Unit is a medical cardiology stepdown unit located adjacent to the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit. Primary nursing care is delivered for cardiology patients requiring diagnostic testing and state-of-the-art, non-surgical interventions for coronary artery disease, congestive heart failure and dysrhythmia treatment. There is a strong emphasis on patient education on this 16-bed unit.
- Cardiac and Thoracic Surgery, Heart and Lung Transplant: This is an acuity-adaptable unit focused on cardiac surgery, thoracic surgery and heart/lung transplantation. Patients on this 27-bed unit can be ICU, intermediate (IMC) or general care status. Most patients are admitted following scheduled surgical interventions for coronary artery bypass, valve replacement or repair, thoracotomy/wedge resection, pneumonectomy, lobectomy or esophagogastrectomy. Patients are also admitted for heart transplantation, lung transplantation and medical management following lung transplant. In addition, the unit admits patients who require a ventricular assist device (VAD). Nursing staff on this acuity adaptable unit care for a variety of patient populations and acuity levels at various points in the hospital stay.
- General Surgery/Bariatric of Excellence: This is a 28-bed General Surgery and Bariatric Center of Excellence unit. Nurses on this unit are highly competent to care for a variety of high acuity patients while maintaining a focus of compassionate, empathetic and patient-centered care. The general surgery patient population is a surgical specialty that focuses on abdominal organs. This unit is also a
specialty unit for bariatric surgery that offers an excellent opportunity to learn about care for patients with a variety of surgical conditions. A strong emphasis is placed on professional development through continuing education for nursing staff, patient specific certifications, and development of resource nurses on the unit to mentor staff and maintain a high standard of care for all patients. This unit offers the nurse an opportunity to gain a broad base of skills and knowledge. This unit will offer motivated nursing staff the opportunity to work with an interdisciplinary team committed to maintaining high standards of patient and family centered care, excellent communication, and will adhere to the principles of Primary Nursing and the Interdisciplinary Model of Care. Centerof Excellence
- General Trauma/Trauma and Surgical IMC: Traumatic injury is a disease process unto itself requiring specialized and experienced multidisciplinary treatment and specialized resources. According to the CDC, the leading causes of trauma are motor vehicle accidents, falls, and assaults. The General Trauma/Trauma and Surgical IMC includes an eight-bed intermediate care unit (IMC) for trauma and surgical patients as well as 18 bed general care unit. The Trauma and Surgical Intermediate Care Unit will provide comprehensive multidisciplinary care to patients who have sustained multi-system trauma as well as high acuity surgical patients. The trauma general care unit provides care for multi-system trauma patients that are admitted to the unit directly from the emergency department, ICU or IMC. This new unit will offer motivated nursing staff the opportunity to work with an interdisciplinary team committed to maintaining high standards of patient and family centered care, excellent communication, and will adhere to the principles of Primary Nursing and the Interdisciplinary Model of Care. This unit will be a model work culture that expects and maintains respect for each other, patients and families in all interaction and communication. Nursing staff will gain advanced knowledge and skills in a supportive academic environment that fosters the development of critical thinking skills, and an understanding of the impact of trauma on the patient and family.
Nurses on this 28-bed unit meet the acute care needs of gynecology and urology patients as well as those from plastic reconstructive surgery and ENT services. Nurses provide care for patients receiving new and innovative surgical procedures and specialize in care of patients requiring one of the three lead-lined patient rooms for radioactive implants. Nurses plan individualized patient care during hospitalization as well as home care upon discharge. Such a combination of patient populations and the opportunity to participate in the most advanced surgical procedures being performed today provides wonderful learning opportunities and challenges nurses by requiring a broad range of surgical and medical nursing skills.
UW Hospital’s multi-organ transplant program is among the largest and most successful in the country. The Transplant Unit offers professionals the chance to practice on the forefront of kidney, liver and pancreas transplant primary nursing. Primary nurses teach patients about self-management of medications, dietary change, and assessing rejection symptoms-while preparing for discharge.
Nurses on this 27-bed orthopedic unit provide care to patients with a variety of orthopedic injuries and conditions. High volume elective surgeries include joint replacements and spine surgeries. In addition to elective surgeries, the nurses on this unit care for trauma patients with a wide range of orthopedic injuries resulting from motor vehicle, industrial, farming, and other accidents. Surgical nursing is the major emphasis; however, this population provides the opportunity to utilize both surgical and medical nursing skills, including cardiac telemetry monitoring. Pain management is a high priority with the orthopedic patient. Nurses are exposed to and become very proficient in utilizing multi-modal therapies in managing pain. Patient education and multidisciplinary collaboration are important aspects of care provided. Nurses work closely with physical therapy and play an integral part in preparing patients for a safe discharge.
Nurses on this 26-bed unit specialize in treating and managing patients with post head and spinal cord injuries, cerebral strokes, central nervous system tumors, cerebral aneurysms, ALS and other neuro-generative diseases. Nurses are involved in comprehensive seizure and movement disorders evaluation and treatment, as well as coordinating and evaluating recovery of neurosurgical patients.
- Inpatient Operating Room: More than 13,500 surgical procedures are performed each year in UW Hospital’s 22 inpatient operating rooms. Nurses are an integral part of surgical teams that perform multispecialty procedures including transplant, oncology procedures and trauma.
- Inpatient Post-Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU): This expanding 16-bay unit provides immediate post-surgical care for patients who undergo surgery or other procedures requiring sedation/anesthesia. Nurses are responsible for assessing, diagnosing, intervening, evaluating, coordinating and facilitating the concentrated care necessary in the immediate post anesthetic period for a multivaried surgical patient population. Patients receive continuous monitoring and observation as they emerge from the effects of sedation/anesthesia. For our critical care patient population this may include hemodynamic monitoring and/or titration of medications. Airway management and pain and comfort management are also a priority. Clinicians work closely with their surgical, anesthesia and Pain Management colleagues to identify the most appropriate plan of care for the patient. Nurse-to-patient staffing ratio is most often one-to-one or one-to-two (and never exceeds one-to-three) providing the utmost in individual attention to each patient.
- American Family Children's Hospital Post-anesthesia Care Unit (PACU): This 10-bay unit provides immediate post-surgical care for pediatric patients who undergo surgery. Nurse clinicians are responsible for assessing, diagnosing, intervening, evaluating, coordinating, and facilitating the concentrated care necessary in the immediate post-anesthetic period for a multivaried surgical pediatric patient population. Each pediatric patient receives continuous monitoring and observation as they emerge from the affects of sedation/anesthesia. Airway and pain management are a priority. Nurse clinicians work closely with their surgical and anesthesia colleagues to identify the most appropriate plan of care for the pediatric patient. Nurse clinician-to-patient staffing ratio is one-to-one providing the utmost in individual attention to each pediatric patient.
- First Day Surgery: This centralized area with 19 bay units for the admission of first day surgery (same day surgical admits) patients provides the care our surgical patients are looking for. Also serves as a “holding” area for inpatient surgical patients.
- Outpatient Operating Room: This unit is a nine-suite operating room for cases scheduled with general or local anesthesia. UW Hospital has an annual caseload of more than 7,500 outpatient operative cases.
- Outpatient Pre/Post-Op and Outpatient PACU: A 30-bed pre/post-op unit and seven-bay post-anesthesia recovery unit (PACU) for outpatient surgeries staffed with nurses experienced in the care of surgical patients.
- American Family Children's Hospital Pre/Post-OP: A 30-bed pre/post-op unit provides care for pediatric surgeries. Pediatric patients will be admitted to the unit if they are first day surgery or outpatient surgery admits. This unit also serves as a “holding area” for inpatient surgery patients. This area is staffed with nurses experienced in the care of pediatric surgical patients.
- American Family Children's Hospital Post-Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU): This 10-bay unit provides immediate post-surgical care for pediatric patients who undergo surgery. Nurses monitor patients constantly until the effects of anesthesia are eliminated. Nurse to patient staffing ratio is one-to-one providing the utmost in individual attention to each patient.
- American Family Children's Hospital Operating Room: This is a six-suite operating room and two-procedure room unit that provides care of pediatric surgical patients undergoing inpatient and outpatient surgical procedures. Nurses are an integral part of the surgical team that performs nearly 5,000 multispecialty procedures each year.
- Trauma and Life Support: The Trauma Life Support Center (TLC) consists of a an interdisciplinary team of health care professionals delivering comprehensive care for patients and families with complex medical or surgical illnesses as well as severe traumatic injuries. Together with physicians, respiratory therapists and pharmacists, nurses utilize advanced technologies and therapies, cutting-edge ventilatory management and provide sophisticated interventions to ensure optimal patient outcomes in this 24-bed ICU. TLC offers motivated nurses an opportunity to gain advanced knowledge and skills in a supportive academic environment that fosters the development of critical care and critical thinking skills, as well as a strong continuing education program supported by both medicine and nursing.
- Burn: The Burn Unit cares for patients with a wide variety of skin conditions, including burns, frostbite, necrotizing infections, and wounds of numerous other etiologies. The seven-bed unit is an American Burn Association verified Burn Center and is the regional burn center for patients from a large geographical area. Nurses provide care for patients across the lifespan, from infants to geriatrics, and for patients ranging in acuity from intensive care through general care. Treating patients from the acute phase through rehabilitation and discharge planning to home. The Burn Unit provides highly specialized care, including post-operative recovery, wound VAC therapy, and dressing changes specific to each patient’s particular type of wound. The Burn Unit is an extremely dynamic environment where teamwork and multi-disciplinary approach are highly valued.
- Emergency Department: The Emergency Department offers comprehensive services with access to a full team of sub specialists for our local and regional patients and referring hospitals and organizations. Almost 45,000 patients per year are treated on an ambulatory, urgent and emergent basis in our 29-bed department. Our staff coordinates care with ground ambulances and Med Flight for severely-ill and injured patients. As the focal point for emergency care, the Emergency Department performs diagnostic intervention, offers immediate consultations for cardiac catheterization, Level I trauma care, operative procedures, special diagnostic testing and definitive care for all patients – pediatrics to adults.
Nurses will provide intensive care to patients who are acutely ill from a neurological deficit. This unit specialized in subarachnoid hemorrhages, unstables strokes, traumatic brain and spinal cord injury. The Neuroscience ICU is a 16-bed ICU which provides ICP monitoring and hemodynamic monitoring of unstable patients. NICU will provide nurses the opportunity to work with neurological and neurosurgical populations.
Nurses on this seven-bed unit are dedicated to providing high-quality intensive care to critically ill cardiac patients. Patients are likely to be individuals with myocardial infarction, congestive heart failure, rhythm disturbances, pulmonary edema or cardiogenic shock. In addition, medical patients with sepsis, acute renal failure, hematologic disturbances and respiratory failure may be admitted to this unit. Primary nursing care is delivered with a mixture of technological expertise and a positive commitment to meeting patient and family needs.
- Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, Neuroscience, ENT and Plastics: Nurses on this 16-bed unit care for children from infancy through adolescence and deliver care through the Primary Nursing Care Delivery Model. Included on this unit is a four-bed segregated transplant area for the children who are highly immunocompromised. Nurses will provide care to children receiving state of the art therapy for hematology, oncology, and immunology diagnosis. These treatments include MIBG and hematopoetic transplant. In addition, nurses care for children and adolescents requiring medical and surgical interventions for complex neurological, plastic and ear nose and throat diagnosis. The nursing staff on this unit provides a holistic and integrative approach to care which creates an environment that fosters opportunities for normalized growth and development. Through school and daily recreation programs, open visitation for parents, siblings, relatives and friends, rooming-in for a family member who wants to stay overnight. Nurses facilitate active participation of patients and family members in treatment and care. In addition,
Madisonarea’s only approved hospital school is housed adjacent to this unit.
- General Care Pediatric: The General Pediatric Unit is a 24-bed, high-acuity unit that provides many opportunities for nurses who are interested in caring for children. Nurses care for children from newborn to the adolescence who have a wide variety of complex medical and surgical problems, including organ transplantation, congenital anomalies, pulmonary disorders, renal disorders, cardiovascular defects, esophageal reflux, diabetes, trauma, urology surgical repairs, ventilator dependent patients, and patients with a tracheotomy. The care that is given is customized to the individual patients and family's physiological, emotional, cultural and spiritual needs. Our focus is health-orientated; we will work in a collaborative manner by using our cutting edge skills in assessments, interventions and treatment to restore our children and their family to their highest level of recovery.
- Pediatric Intensive Care: The Pediatric ICU offers challenging and rewarding critical care nursing opportunities. Patients range from newborns through adolescence. PICU nurses provide comprehensive care for patients admitted with a wide variety of both medical and surgical issues including; acute head injuries, critical neurological disorders, pulmonary diseases, cardiac anomalies, organ transplantation, multi system organ failure, and ECMO. Primary nurses, with a highly skilled and committed multidisciplinary team, provide family-centered care to critically ill or injured children and their families in this state-of-the art 21-bed unit.
- Pediatric Satellite Unit: The Pediatric Satellite Unit is a seven-bed unit that provides many opportunities for nurses who are interested in caring for children. Nurses care for children from newborn to the adolescence who have a wide variety of complex medical and surgical problems, including organ transplantation, congenital anomalies, pulmonary disorders, renal disorders, cardiovascular defects, esophageal reflux, diabetes, trauma, urology surgical repairs, patients with hematological and oncology disorders, and patients with a tracheotomy. The care that is given is customized to the individual patients and family's physiological, emotional, cultural and spiritual needs. Our focus is health-orientated; we will work in a collaborative manner by using our cutting edge skills in assessments, interventions and treatment to restore our children and their family to their highest level of recovery.
This state-licensed, Medicare-certified agency provides skilled nursing, physical, occupational and speech therapy, social work and home health aide visits to homebound patients in
Care Initiation Unit (CIU)
Nurses on this 18-bed unit provide care to a diverse population of adult medical and surgical patients. The unit has two primary functions: to care for those medical and surgical patients with an expected short stay for a post-operative procedure or a medical condition, and as an admission unit providing admission care and treatment for patients entering the hospital as a transition before being placed on a specific nursing service unit. The night shift census consists primarily of the short stay patients unless high census dictates the need to care for in patients. The diversity of the patient population provides nurses with the challenge to use their expertise in assessment and intervention.
The Psychiatry Unit provides care for adult patients using medication intervention, individual and group therapy, and occupational and activity therapy on this 18-bed unit. Nursing plays an integral role in this interdisciplinary team in coordinating care for patients often suffering from multisystem breakdowns requiring the integration of medical and psychiatric nursing skills.
Nurses on this 39-bed unit provide comprehensive care to adult patients requiring the following services: Medical Oncology, Hematology, Bone Marrow Transplantation, and Palliative Care. In order to provide a comprehensive, coordinated plan of care, the unit is comprised of a multidisciplinary team that collaboratively strives to provide high quality care to our patients and their families. The services and treatments performed on this unit are multi-faceted and include physical care, psychosocial support, discharge planning, patient/family education and vigilant physical assessments. Nurses are knowledgeable in the administration of chemotherapy, blood products and antimicrobial medications.
Health care professionals in this unit are skilled in providing intermittent hemodialysis and continuous renal replacement therapy to patients of all ages, neonatal to geriatric. These skills are performed in a fast-paced nine-station unit for adult patients as well as in various ICU and IMCU units throughout UW Hospital and Clinics and the Veteran’s Hospital. Pediatric patients are cared for in a separate three-station child-friendly environment at the Children’s hospital and Pediatric Intensive Care Unit. Major conditions treated include end stage renal disease, acute renal failure secondary to pre- and post-renal causes, multi-system organ failure and transplant support. Nurses work closely with multiple disciplines to plan care for patients requiring hemodialysis in outpatient settings.
Venous Access Team
The Venous Access Team (VAT) is a comprehensive team providing vascular access services to the patients at UW Hospital and Clinics. VAT is comprised of experienced nurse clinicians specializing in the assessment, insertion and maintenance of venous access devices for all age groups. The team duties include insertion of peripheral IVs for the difficult to start patients, insertion of PICC lines at the bedside with ultrasound guidance, midline catheter insertion, trouble shooting of vascular access devices, early assessment of patients for appropriate line placement and resource for nursing staff to enhance for vascular access skills. The team works collaboratively with all disciplines in planning and intervention for each patient’s vascular access needs. VAT participates in monitoring quality out comes of vascular access devices placed by the Venous Access Team.
SOS (Save Our Shift) Team
The SOS team is a team of experienced nrse clinicians that serve nursing services to provide support to the clinical care settings in medical, surgical and critical care areas. They respond to acute situations in clinical areas when additional resources are needed to support patient care for changes in patient condition, transport of patients needing to be monitored during procedures, provide moderate sedation for unscheduled procedures and any additional support as able. These nurses participate in all codes, traumas and any situations needing their expert skills. The SOS nurse functions independently throughout their shift prioritizing the requests based on the most urgent needs of the patients.
Per Diem Nursing Pool
The inpatient Per Diem Nursing Pool originated over 20 years ago and embodies 30 to 40 RNs who participate in a variety of flexible scheduling options designed to fit their lifestyle needs. The Per Diem Pool offers each RN the ability to select from a range of medical, surgical, critical care and pediatric units to work on that will best suit their interest, skill set, and knowledge base. The Per Diem RN is a valued member of the department of nursing who skillfully serves and supports the inpatient unit needs on a prn basis, or to temporarily fill longer range nursing unit vacancies or Leave of absences.
Nursing Operation Support Float Pool
Float Pool is comprised of critical care and medical/surgical nurses as well as nursing assistants and health unit coordinators. The Float Pool allows experienced nurses the ability to work with a wide variety and ever changing patient population. Current skills are expanded, and new/rewarding competencies are developed. Care that is provided will be appreciated throughout the organization by staff and patients.
The Radiology Department has state-of-the-art diagnostic and treatment equipment providing imaging service to both inpatients and outpatients. The D3 West module includes Angio/Interventional Radiology providing neuro and body interventional diagnostic and treatment procedures, the GI/GU, and the General Imaging Section. The E3 West module includes Radiology Prep and Recovery Unit, CT Scan, Ultrasound, and Mammography. The E3 West module includes the MRI and the Nuclear Medicine Sections. Nursing care is provided in the Radiology Prep and Recovery Unit, CT Scan, Ultrasound, Angio/Interventional and MRI Sections with screenings, patient prep, and intra-procedure care including conscious sedation, post procedure care, and education.