At Methodist Hospital, Houston, Tex, a dual career ladder integrates professional development within a clinical career progression offering a lifetime of development through competencies. The relationship is imbedded in the institution’s Nursing Clinical Career Progression Model, a program so unique that Methodist has copyrighted it.

“The idea is to ramp up practice, to incent people to stay at the bedside, and to develop leadership at the front line,” explained Pamela Klauer Triolo, RN, PhD, chief nursing executive and senior vice president. “We believe that the more you can push power to the level of the staff nurse, the better patient care will be.”

Woven through the model is a belief that nursing is leadership, art, and science, said Triolo. Nursing at Methodist operates around 5 clinical practice levels, beginning with the new nurse or nurse new to the hospital and going up to the expert nurse who is a master-prepared,...

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