UW Health nurses define shared governance as an organized system for collaborative decision-making and self-regulation which empowers nurses in all roles to:
- Advance professional practice and autonomy
- Improve nurse satisfaction
- Promote a healthy work environment
- Achieve quality patient- and family-centered care that is culturally relevant
UW Health nurses often work with nursing leaders and other UW Health executives, to provide insight and help guide decisions that affect all nurses and helps shape professional nursing practice and patient care at UW Health.
There are currently eight core nursing councils, each of them devoted to a specific area of focus, including:
- Professional advancement
- Quality and standardization
- Research and evidence-based practice
- Products and technology
- Staffing and operations
The Nursing Coordinating Council serves as a governing group for all councils, with a membership roster that includes all council chairs and chair elects. In addition, there are Unit Councils, a Council of Unit Chairs, Site Councils and an Ambulatory Nursing Council.
Council membership provides an opportunity for nurses to collaborate with nursing colleagues and be part of decisions that impact nursing practice at UW Health. The councils also provide leadership opportunities for nurses interested in serving as the chair of a council.
The council structure provides a way to ensure that all UW Health nurses have a voice.