The need for nurses to understand patient safety and quality outcome data is pressing in the current era of data transparency. Health care outcomes data are now publicly reported and readily accessible to consumers, are necessary for performance-based reimbursement, and are required by government and regulatory agencies. In order for nurses at all levels of practice to own their outcomes and be accountable for making improvements, they must possess skills in collecting, analyzing, evaluating, and acting on outcome data. This article provides basic tools and clinical examples for nurses to use in a focused application of outcome data and a structured process for improving nursing care outcomes.

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