Centegra Health System is currently working toward obtaining the Magnet designation for nursing excellence. The Magnet Recognition Program is a national designation that recognizes healthcare organizations that are committed to teamwork, positive patient outcomes and excellent quality of care. As Centegra moves toward Magnet, it will be even more important to retain highly qualified professional staffs and use interdisciplinary collaborative approaches and evidence-based practices to provide the best possible care highest quality of care to the community.In February 2011, the Magnet Engagement Team hosted its first Magnet Fair. The event welcomed more than 400 Centegra Associates and physicians to learn more about Centegra’s journey toward Magnet status. The highlight of the fair was the Centegra Nursing Tree, which showed the connections of nurses across the health system.In 2012, Centegra Hospital-McHenry and Centegra Hospital-Woodstock plan to submit applications for the Magnet designation. To receive this honor, each nurse and hospital department will reaffirm Centegra’s commitment to bringing patient care to the forefront of the mission, vision and values of everyday work.Centegra rolls out Professional Practice ModelThe Centegra Professional Practice model defines what it means to practice nursing in every department in the health system. The model describes Centegra’s professional values, practice environment and relationships via the Relationship-Based Delivery Care Model. Nurses at Centegra are empowered to be autonomous in their professional decision making. Their nursing practice is governed using the nursing shared governance structure. Innovation and evidence-based practice are encouraged and recognized.Centegra’s model was initiated by a group of charge nurses who participated in the Charge Nurse Academy. The ideas that were designed were presented to the nursing Professional Council. A group of direct-care nurses from the Professional Council collaborated to create a shared vision of the Professional Practice Model. This group developed the first Centegra Professional Practice Model to represent nursing.The model was designed with a heart in the center because Centegra nurses believe the patient, family and community are at the heart of Centegra nursing. A collaborative interdisciplinary approach calls on the expertise of nurses, other clinicians and physicians. Also central to nursing care are Centegra’s philosophies of relationship-based care, shared governance, evidenced-based care, innovation, nurse autonomy and nursing standards of practice.In the past year Centegra expanded the Professional Practice Model and restructured the Nursing Portfolio, enhancing the Clinical Ladder and the Leadership Development course to reflect its main elements.