CNO Roundtable 2021


Q: Did COVID-19 bring about any intraprofessional collaborations that you found especially useful?

Erin Keefe

Dignity Health – St. Bernardine Medical Center

When the initial surge was happening in New York, I reached out to colleagues and asked what they were doing and how they adapted, which was very helpful as the surge began in Southern California. We had great interprofessional collaboration as well. While our patient census was high throughout the winter, our physicians, residents, medical students, PAs and CRNAs all willingly redeployed to assist with patient care in new and creative ways. We also had employees from facilities in other areas of the country that were not at surge capacity who volunteered to come assist us. They were literally lifesavers.

Evelyn Ku

Alhambra Hospital Medical Center

Our facility is part of a network of hospitals. We’ve learned to rely on each other’s strengths and services. If another hospital has supplies we are short of, such as PPE, we reach out for help. Recently, we were able to help each other by working out a process to transport and store bodies, which has been a problem due to lack of space in the morgue.

Glenda Luce

Foothill Regional Medical Center

Especially in the early stages of the pandemic, I tried to take every opportunity to hear what others were facing and how they were responding. Our organization had the foresight to establish an interdisciplinary team of nurses and other stakeholders from our West Coast and East Coast facilities, which met daily to discuss how things were evolving and how we could assist each other.

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This team was also able to get organization-wide approvals for needed changes rather than each hospital having to go through their own approval process. This gave our West Coast facilities a head start when the late fall surge hit. We’ve also worked with our local sister facilities to offload some overflow patients and reduce the number of patients waiting in overcrowded emergency departments.

David Marshall


Many academic medical center chief nursing executives are connected through professional organizations and a variety of email lists set up specifically for the chief nursing executive community. These have provided a forum for sharing what’s happening across the nation; how organizations have innovatively addressed challenges; and best practices and tips. These resources were extremely helpful over the past year. It really is a community of people in similar positions, experiencing similar situations.

Jinhee Nguyen

Adventist Health Glendale

During surges, our COVID-19 advisory team met daily to review the latest treatment, staffing, resource management and testing options; watch how other hospitals were managing; and see how we could get out in front. One positive development was breaking down the silos between departments. I have never seen such incredible blending of different specialties: anesthesiologists working in ICU, labor & delivery nurses working in ED, physical therapists becoming part of prone teams in ICU— the list goes on and on

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Lauren Spilsbury

Redlands Community Hospital

During the pandemic, the Hospital Association of Southern California brought together many stakeholders in our county, including state and county public health department representatives, emergency medical services leaders and local hospital leadership. Hospital data was shared to enable us to see the overall impact to the community. I found this collaboration incredibly valuable, as the group generously offered solutions to any number of problems.

Patricia Vasquez

Adventist Health White Memorial

In January, we welcomed an 18-member National Guard medical strike team, who arrived to assist us in caring for patients in our emergency department. At the request of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), some USAF and U.S. Army medical personnel were deployed to provide additional support. We also worked with FEMA and the Army Corps of Engineers to construct an emergency field hospital, which is an extension of our hospital designed to safely care for up to 80 COVID-19 telemetry and med-surg patients.

Ron Yolo

Glendale Memorial Hospital and Health Center

Intraprofessional collaboration was a gamechanger during this pandemic. We leveraged the vast footprint of our system to look for best practices and lessons learned, and collaborated with subject matter experts in devising novel practices that assisted us in safely and effectively caring for patients when resources were scarce.

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