“Another aid in the development of critical thinking I cannot stress enough is the utilization of the chain of command,” Vest says.
“In the chain of command, the nurse always reports up to the nurse manager and down to the patient care aide.
The nursing profession tends to attract those who have natural nurturing abilities, a desire to help others and a knack for science or anatomy.
But there is another important skill that successful nurses share and it’s often over-looked: the ability to think critically.
“Nurses are faced with decision-making situations in patient care, and each decision they make impacts patient outcomes.
Nursing critical thinking skills drive the decision-making process and impact the quality of care provided,” says Georgia Vest, DNP, RN and senior dean of nursing at Rasmussen College School of Nursing.
One way for students to begin implementing critical thinking is by applying the nursing process to their line of thought, according to Vest.
The process includes five steps: assessment, diagnosis, outcomes/planning, implementation and evaluation.
Identifying a problem, determining the best solution and choosing the most effective method are all parts of the critical thinking process.
After executing the plan, critical thinkers reflect on the situation to figure out if it was effective and if it could have been done better.