APP Director Transition

Turning to Shared Leadership for New APP Director

Jennifer Orozco, MMS, PA-C, DFAAPAJennifer Orozco, MMS, PA-C, DFAAPA

As Rush’s Advanced Practice Provider (APP) network continued to grow and expand, it became imperative to redesign the role of the director of advanced practice providers. The APP network includes physician assistants (PAs) and advanced practice nurses (APNs: nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, nurse anesthetists and nurse midwives).

Nurses conducted an extensive review of current Rush APP practices from 2014 to 2016, which included formal and informal discussions with PAs, APNs, physician leaders, nursing leaders, human resources and RUMG administration. They also analyzed Rush’s current leadership structure, policies, procedures and philosophies.

Several key issues were identified, including lack of APP leadership, underutilization, high APP turnover and inefficient clinical and administrative processes.

In order to be successful, the role of APP director needed to be reinvented to become a shared role, aligning with both medicine and nursing to optimize care. Having been at Rush for several years, Jennifer Orozco, MMS, PA-C, DFAAPA, and Katie McAndrews, MSN, APN, were the perfect complement to share both the PA and APN perspectives; they became the directors of APPs in June 2016.

Katie McAndrews, MSN, APNKatie McAndrews, MSN, APN

Over the next year, the two directors will be partnering with other Rush APPs and senior leaders to create a focused, three-year strategic plan for APPs. This process will allow Rush to thoughtfully and deliberately set realistic goals, plan and implement strategies, measure outcomes and receive feedback for improvement.

By creating and implementing this model, Rush will enable APPs to put patients first by providing exceptional, affordable health care services without compromising quality and safety. And by supporting APP practice and leadership, we can help Rush achieve its overall plan: Best People, Best Quality, Best Programs and Highest Value.