Date of Conferral
Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
Shared governance is a model in which staff collaborate through a decentralized decision-making structure, sharing ownership and accountability and partnering to make decisions about clinical practice, professional development, patient experience, quality improvement, and research. The hospital shared governance project team aligned its shared governance model with the American Nurses Credentialing Center Pathway to Excellence standards. The purposes of this project were to do a process evaluation of shared governance implementation at one 64-bed community hospital in central Florida and make recommendations for continuous quality improvement. The project followed the plan-do-study-act methodology developed by Deming. Through the collection of meeting minutes and other shared governance documents, semi structured interviews with nurse leaders, and the results of an anonymous survey through SurveyMonkey, the process of shared governance implementation was evaluated. The major themes included the hospitals need to establish an effective communication system to ensure all 185 RNs are aware of its shared governance, restructure of the Nurse Practice Council, and a reinitiating of shared governance. Limitations of the project included the immaturity of the hospital at the time of implementation, nursing lack of knowledge about shared governance, lack of dedicated resources and competing priorities, and nursing leadership and unit turnover, which were barriers to shared governance implementation. Supporting shared governance contributes to social change by creating a nursing culture that promotes quality, nursing excellence, professional decision making, and a healthy work environment, ultimately improving outcomes for all stakeholders.