Practice Drift

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Practice drift is a phenomenon that is slowly starting to gain attention in the health care community and nursing. The concept of practice drift includes practicing outside one’s scope of licensesure, failure to follow established rules and regulations, and deviation from policies and procedures, standards of care, and professional recommendations. As a result, cultural norms begin to take hold, and the drift can intensify, resulting in untoward outcomes and patient harm. A query of nurses at a comprehensive cancer center revealed drift happening routinely. Nurse members of a mature shared governance council structure reported drifting or observing drift in their practice setting. Despite tenure, academic preparation, and specialty certification, good nurses are drifting from the very protocols that are written and published to keep patients safe.

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  • 01/31/2024
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