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UCI Health awarded its fifth Magnet Recognition®

Achievement reflects a commitment to nursing excellence

September 29, 2023
uci health nursing team at magnet recognition ceremony 2023; group of nurses standing behind tables with balloons in the background
UCI Health nurses gathered this week to hear ANCC deliver the
official notification that UCI Health is now one of an elite group
of health systems to achieve a fifth Magnet designation.

Orange, Calif. — UCI Health has attained its fifth Magnet recognition, a testament to its continued dedication to high-quality nursing practice.

The American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Magnet Recognition Program® distinguishes healthcare organizations that meet rigorous standards for nursing excellence. This credential is the highest national honor for professional nursing practice.

Receiving Magnet recognition for the fifth time is a great achievement for UCI Health, as it continues to proudly belong to the global Magnet community — a small, select group of healthcare organizations and hospitals in the U.S and abroad.

logo for magnet recognition. green background with white letters saying magnet recognized american nurses credentialing center with leaf decoration “Magnet recognition is a tremendous honor and reflects the daily commitment our nurses make to delivering the highest quality of care to our patients,” said Anne Marie Watkins, DNP, MSHCA, RN, chief nursing executive for UCI Health and assistant dean of nursing education administration in the Sue & Bill Gross UCI School of Nursing.

“Earning consecutive Magnet recognition over 20 years is not just a great accomplishment and an incredible source of pride for our nurses, it underscores the foundation of excellence and values that drive our entire staff above and beyond to meet the healthcare needs of our community,” she said.

Magnet recognition is the gold standard for nursing excellence and is a factor when the public judges healthcare organizations. U.S. News & World Report’s annual showcase of “America’s Best Hospitals” includes Magnet recognition in its ranking criteria for quality of inpatient care. Currently, 612 hospitals in the U.S. and worldwide have achieved Magnet recognition, 55 in California. Fewer than 10% of Magnet hospitals have achieved five Magnet designations.

Research demonstrates that Magnet recognition provides specific benefits to healthcare organizations and their communities, such as:

  • Higher patient satisfaction with nurse communication, availability of help and receipt of discharge information
  • Lower risk of 30-day mortality and lower failure to rescue rates
  • Higher job satisfaction among nurses
  • Lower nurse reports of intentions to leave their positions

UCI Health has a long-standing tradition of nursing excellence. In 2003, UCI Medical Center became the first academic medical center in Southern California to achieve Magnet® designation and the first hospital in Orange County.

In recent years, nursing units at UCI Medical Center have earned multiple Beacon Awards for Excellence from the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses, including:

  • Burn intensive care unit — one of only three burn ICUs in the country to have earned a gold-level Beacon Award for Excellence
  • Surgical intensive care unit — consecutive Beacon Awards for Excellence
  • Neurosciences, cardiac care and medical intensive care units — silver Beacon Award of Excellence

Nearly 52% of nurses at UCI Health are nationally certified in at least one specialty and 83% are prepared at the BSN level or higher.

Healthcare organizations must reapply for Magnet recognition every four years based on adherence to Magnet concepts and demonstrated improvements in patient care and quality. The Magnet Model provides a framework for nursing practice, research, and measurement of outcomes. These include assessments of the quality of nursing leadership and coordination and collaboration across specialties, as well as processes for measuring and improving the quality and delivery of care.

About UCI Health

UCI Health is the clinical enterprise of the University of California, Irvine, and the only academic health system in Orange County. Patients can access UCI Health at primary and specialty care offices across Orange County and at its main campus, UCI Medical Center in Orange, Calif. The 459-bed, acute care hospital, listed among America’s Best Hospitals by U.S. News & World Report for 23 consecutive years, provides tertiary and quaternary care, ambulatory and specialty medical clinics, behavioral health and rehabilitation services. UCI Medical Center is home to Orange County’s only National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center, high-risk perinatal/neonatal program and American College of Surgeons-verified Level I adult and Level II pediatric trauma center and regional burn center. UCI Health serves a region of nearly 4 million people in Orange County, western Riverside County and southeast Los Angeles County. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter.

About ANCC’s Magnet Recognition Program®

The Magnet Recognition Program — administered by the American Nurses Credentialing Center, the largest and most prominent nurses credentialing organization in the world — identifies health care organizations that provide the very best in nursing care and professionalism in nursing practice.

The Magnet Recognition Program serves as the gold standard for nursing excellence and provides consumers with the ultimate benchmark for measuring quality of care. For more information about the Magnet Recognition Program and current statistics, visit www.nursingworld.org/magnet.