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Posted April 18, 2014
Push for Magnet Designation Begins at All Children’s Hospital

Magnet kickoff
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It was a colorful Magnet kickoff complete with a giant-sized mock magnet, a "Footloose" flash mob and an auditorium brimming with enthusiasm to mark the start of a journey toward nursing excellence.

The All Children's Hospital staff members who packed the ECC on Thursday donned all manner of lively shoes in the spirit of the "Fancy Feet" theme and "Watch Us Grow, Footsteps to Excellence" slogan. It was all to celebrate the push toward Magnet designation, an honor that reflects the ultimate credential for high-quality patient care a hospital can achieve.

"Magnet is a hospital designation led by nursing and the leading source of successful nursing practices and strategies worldwide," said Magnet manager Cherilyn Ashlock.

Ashlock was then "interrupted" by a high-energy show of surprise choreography, with a crew of nurses rushing to the front of the room to dance along with Kenny Loggins' 1980s hit Footloose. In the process, the massive faux magnet was used to "pull" participants into a dance circle.

That set the upbeat tone as Ashlock, admirably catching her breath after the light-hearted dance performance, singled out an array of "Magnet Ambassadors" who have helped her create the foundation for the mission, and represent a multi-disciplinary face of ACH: the NICU, PICU, CVICU, OR Human Resources, Pharmacy, Respiratory Therapy, Acute Care Rehab, PACU, Tampa Outpatient Care and more.

 "Over the last seven weeks I've had the privilege of working with this amazing group of Magnet ambassadors," she said. "They champion the Magnet movement in their departments, in their clinics, in their outpatient care centers, and in their units."

Thursday's Magnet leadership symposium included a comprehensive overview of the magnet model, and a thorough review of the work already underway at All Children's. It's significance was put into perspective by Cindy Driscoll RN, BSN, MS, NEA-BC, and Interim CNO: 

"The Magnet kickoff event at the leadership symposium was one of many significant milestones we will have on our journey to excellence at All Children's Hospital. We must maintain momentum and energy as we highlight the great work of our interdisciplinary team. If the Magnet kickoff is any indication of what the next 2-½ years will look like, we are destined for success."

Words of support were also added by ACH president and physician-in-chief Jonathan Ellen, M.D.  "This is all part of our commitment as an institution to a culture of excellence and the highest level of safety and quality for our patients and families," he said.

There was also no shortage of team-building games.

Racing the clock in "Minute to Magnet," hosted by Scott "Ferrari" Ludes of the PICU, contestants competed in such challenges as balancing Ding Dong snack cakes on foreheads, balancing plastic cups in a pyramid and assembling puzzle pieces from cereal boxes. It was a fun way to launch a landmark and serious day - the march toward prestigious Magnet designation, silly shoes and all.