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Empowering Nurses From Bedside to Boardrooms
Episode

P.K. Scheerle, CEO at Gifted Healthcare and Nurses Everywhere

Empowering Nurses From Bedside to Boardrooms

In this episode, we are privileged to host one of the most successful nurses in the history of the United States – P.K. Scheerle. P.K. is a registered nurse with a  clinical background in pediatric intensive care, a self-made entrepreneur with remarkable vision and tremendous determination. She is also the CEO at  Gifted Healthcare and Nurses Everywhere.

P.K. talks about leveraging her nursing profession to start a business, the importance of recognizing nurse skills in both healthcare and boardroom, her inspiration as a nurse, innovator, and entrepreneur. We cover how Gifted Healthcare adds value to both nurses and the healthcare space. P.K. also shares insights on the role of nurses in improving health outcomes and in business outside of the healthcare ecosystem, anecdotes on nurse innovations and setbacks, and many more. 

This episode is packed with amazing stories and insights, so get your notes ready, and don’t forget to tune in!

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Empowering Nurses From Bedside to Boardrooms

About P.K. Scheerle

P.K. Scheerle is the CEO at Gifted Healthcare. She is also the Founder and CEO at Nurses Everywhere. She is a nationally recognized leader in business and healthcare.

P.K. is a registered nurse with a clinical background in pediatric intensive care, is a self-made entrepreneur who saw a need in health care to keep experienced and talented clinicians at the bedside. By utilizing her remarkable vision and tremendous determination, she has repeatedly created exciting and scalable health care companies and services. 

P.K. Scheerle graduated from the executive program of Harvard Business School in 1991 after graduating from nursing school in 1980 as president of her class. She continues to serve on numerous nonprofit boards, and she has also received many awards for contributions to the community and the nursing profession.

Empowering Nurses From Bedside to Boardrooms with P.K. Scheerle, CEO at Gifted Healthcare and Nurses Everywhere: Audio automatically transcribed by Sonix

Empowering Nurses From Bedside to Boardrooms with P.K. Scheerle, CEO at Gifted Healthcare and Nurses Everywhere: this mp3 audio file was automatically transcribed by Sonix with the best speech-to-text algorithms. This transcript may contain errors.

Rebecca Love:
Hi, this is Rebecca Love with Outcomes Rocket Nursing, and today our guest is P.K/ Scheerle. In 2009, P.K. Joined Gifted Nurses Gifted Healthcare, a privately held, highly successful health care staffing company. Rejoining her previously successful management team at Gifted Healthcare, P.K. Is the CEO emeritus and current board member of Gifted HealthCare. Under P.K.’s leadership, Gifted Healthcare has grown dramatically, operating through regional offices in Louisiana, Texas, Arkansas, and Oklahoma and nationally through its travel nurse division. Gifted Healthcare’s broad reach provides critical care nursing, disease management, vendor management systems, local nurse staffing, travel staffing, case management, nurse navigators, and private duty care. In 1982, P.K. founded the American Nursing Services. Under her direction, the company grew from five employees to over twenty-five hundred employees with locations in nine states providing clinical staffing, disease management, and rudiment management systems, home care, and therapists. As an experienced CEO, P.K. has repeatedly created winning teams, adding value and innovation as a serial health care entrepreneur. Miss Scheerle is a registered nurse with a clinical background in pediatric intensive care, is a self-made entrepreneur who saw a need in health care to keep experienced and talented clinicians at the bedside. By utilizing her remarkable vision and tremendous determination, she has repeatedly created exciting and scalable health care companies and services. Miss Scheerle graduated from the executive program of Harvard Business School in 1991 after graduating from nursing school in 1980 as president of her class. Miss Scheerle has and continues to serve on numerous nonprofit boards, and she has also received many awards for contributions to the community and the nursing profession. P.K., thank you so much for being here today.

P.K. Scheerle:
Oh, I’m delighted to be here. Thanks for having me, Rebecca.

Rebecca Love:
You know P.K., every conversation we have, what I’ve always loved about you is with your distinguished past, there is one thing about you that you have always done, which is identified as a nurse first. And I was wondering if you can actually dive in a little bit to talking about your background. What has inspired your work in health care? And more importantly, why did you always keep nursing center and everything that you did in your titles and in your introductions at a time through the 1980s up to the current day when nursing often wasn’t there with a voice or a seat at the table?

P.K. Scheerle:
Well, that’s a great question. And it’s what I get asked on occasion. You know, one of the easy thoughts is that it was self-serving in that a female CEO in those days, I needed all the help I could get for collaborators and cheerleaders in places where I didn’t have access. In other words, older white men. And so the fact that I was a registered nurse, I really did use it to build immediately the image in their mind of a learned, capable in charge, trustworthy, dependable, bright go-to kind of professional. And I used that early in my career because it gave me credibility with the powers that were at the time otherwise inaccessible to nurses as entrepreneurs.

Rebecca Love:
And I love to hear you say that because I think so many of us as nurses really struggle with the interactions that we’ve had in health care and health care executives and those that are both within the health care system and external to it of what that moment happens when you do introduce yourself often as a nurse. And I’m thrilled to hear that in your situation, you found that it actually leveled the playing field and created credibility around what you’re doing. And I think I just interrupted you a bit there. But when you’re looking at that conversation as that it did create that passion or it did create that moment of connection, what kind of advice would you give to those in health care when they’re thinking about the challenges facing it and how they should be thinking about nurses in a way that they may not currently think about nurses?

P.K. Scheerle:
That’s a great question. The idea of what can a nurse do, what skills does a nurse walk into it with? Is a nurse a good salesman? Well, that nurse has sold a lot of things to a lot of people to take care of sick people with families that are anxious and physicians who aren’t always the most patient individuals. And so nurses are naturally very good mediators. We’re very good negotiators. We’re very good salespeople. We can do forty-seven things at once. We’re competent beyond the credit we give ourselves. If you look at a setup in any ICU, only a nurse could put that together and, you know, maybe an engineer from Virginia Tech might do it, but that’d be the only other person. And so you think about all those skill sets and then you think about the skill sets that are important in the C suite. Having the hearts and minds of the people you serve is critical. Well, as a nurse, you have to have the heart in mind of your patient and that patient’s family to be repeatedly successful and to be considered one of the best, which really was always very important to me. And you see that in many nurses. It is very important to us to feel as though that patient got great care because we were there. And so I hope that kind of answers your question.

Rebecca Love:
Absolutely does. And I wanted to start there with you because I think that for those that are having this conversation, you have had such a distinguished career. You have built and sold and built and sold and scaled organizations and companies for the last several decades. And so what has inspired your work in healthcare? What was that has created this passion? Because anybody who meets you, you sense it when they meet you. If it’s across a computer screen, if it’s face to face, you emulate inspiration just when you’re in your presence. So what has driven that inspiration for you?

P.K. Scheerle:
It has been an honor in my career to be there in a human’s most vulnerable times. My kids laugh and go, now she’s going to say naked and afraid for a TV show. Of course, naked and afraid. You’re vulnerable, you’re in pain. You’re undressed. You don’t know anyone. You’re scared and your family’s scared. And it just sets up for not the very best. And so it was always a great sense of pride to be able to lessen the burden of those families and that patient. It was an honor to help a patient die with beautiful music and not having it be terrible. It’s an honor to be a kind enough nurse to think about even that child who was not born alive, being beautiful in the mother’s arms for a photo of the mother. I mean, it’s it doesn’t have to be textbook. Your creativity, innovation. I mean, Rebecca, you and I could make a list right now of the seventy-five thousand things we’ve made with other things to use in a hospital, like intensive care nurse. I can make a mobile for a baby out of seventy-five different things because I’ve done it forever so I could make one for the baby that, you know, is in the PICU. You know, we’ve all made chest tubes out of Amerson bottles and foley tubes. Come on, you can do that. You can kind of do anything. So the idea of the nurse as an innovator and a problem solver and understanding how things work. Basic concepts, be it gravity, be it things that you don’t really think about as part of the care of a person physically. All those things are part of nursing. And funny enough, they are the most needed skills in the C suite and more importantly, in the C suites of the future, where the world is around networks and equality and helping each other.

P.K. Scheerle:
And when you think about the idea of when we were little, at least when I was little and you wanted information, you had to go to the library. You had to get the library and it had to be open. The librarian had to tell you whether the book was checked out. If it wasn’t checked out you got to get the book. You got to read the book. And now we have this thing called Google, and it wiped out a whole thing of existing infrastructure. So you think about that in the profession of nursing and in health care, and you think of every man having access and opportunity to health and wellness. And in every country in the world, the only professional category that could meet the demand of this population, an aging one around the world, is the registered nurse. And the work of the nurse is so important. And you think about nurse helpers and licensed nurses and nurses aides and all of the people that help the registered nurse take care of the patient. It is so important to be able to run a team and you play to the whistle. And you’re proud to wear the jersey. And that’s just what a chief nurse or a head nurse or even the 22-year-old charge nurse learns quickly. And bring a few extra whistles so that you can make other people assistant chief nurses for the day so you have less problems when you have too many patients and not enough nurses.

Rebecca Love:
I love that you’re saying play to the whistle and keeping it a focus on the team because I think there are so many skill sets. I see resume after resume from nurses. And it is so hard for nurses to sort of categorize and quantify their skill sets and what their strengths are. And you just summarized it so well, because the things that nurses do is they effectively manage life and death scenarios and health and wellness and disease states in a highly complicated environment, always knowing how to manage the most critical and managing people and teams and organizations in ways that if we could translate that to the greater world, that value of nurses would be so indispensable. One thing I think that you have always focused on is how do you inspire those nurses to stay by the bedside and do their job to their fullest and feel empowered? And how have you and your organization added value in your mind to the health care system? Because I think this debate of everything that you’re seeing coming out post-Covid, even though it was happening well before Covid, it’s talking about the state of nursing at a crisis point or at a breaking point for so many. And you and Gifted Healthcare for a very long time have been working to add value in health care. And so can you speak a bit to what your history has been and why and how you have kept that as a central focus?

P.K. Scheerle:
Yeah, thank you for that. There’s a lot in that package, so I’m not going to get it all, but I’m going to the last part, which is the one I remember best of. What’s the secret sauce for creating value in your career P.K. And now through Gifted to your clients, and what is it? The idea is if you pick four or five clients in a state by example that treasure the work of the nurse, and they can have basically an army they don’t pay for with all the bells and whistles of Green Berets that can swoop in and do anything with a smile on their face. And that hospital’s CEO, CFO, Chief nurse knows they have an army they don’t have to pay for unless they need us and that we’re going to be there. And when you are called to duty, you know, it was once said by a wise person. War is too important to be left to the generals. It is the nurse in the arena, in the trench, not the one in the stands. Me, I’m the one in the stands. But it is those that walk in, for people they don’t know who will never pay them for part of the room rate to give a little piece of themselves to the dignity of that human being. It’s the same in the boardroom, though. Bedside all the way to the boardroom the work of the nurse. You think about EIC, you, Rebecca, or virtual care or telemedicine. If you think about DAGES, of the 400 plus DRGs, over 80 percent could be addressed by the work of the registered nurse or a nurse helper. Good golly, Miss Molly. The cost curve there and the buckets the money’s going to could be so much better spent on access to care. So you think in America, one in every 10 families has a registered nurse in their family. The idea of meeting demand access is something our profession, four million strong in America has the opportunity to influence. And without a nurse on every health care board, a nurse should be on every hospital board for a hospital to operate without the benefit in the boardroom of a good strong. Well, I don’t mean necessarily a doctorate in nursing, but if you were a PICU nurse, I hope that you had your CCRA. And when you were at the bedside, I hope you were the example of the finest nurse ever. Because that’s how you will be in the boardroom. And so you bring the package with you. And I don’t understand. I don’t remember the rest of your question.

Rebecca Love:
No, it was I love how you brought that from the value that nurses bring by the bedsides, the value that they bring in the boardroom of hospital systems. Because as you were saying, you know, one in 10 families, has a nurse in their family. That’s. Ordinary number, four million nurses in the United States, which is the largest workforce in the entire United States, and that health care systems, the vast majority of those who work in them are nurses. And when you have a hospital system that has this board and there is no representation by a nurse on that board, the question becomes, how do you deliver that care? Because the truth is, why are people in the hospital? The people are in the hospital, they’re admitted because they need access to nursing care. They can’t stay at home. And yes, the surgeon steps in. But really what we’re saying is you are so ill, you are so sick, you are so at risk that you need somebody with trained nursing expertise to watch and monitor your life 24 hours a day so that we can get you home safely. And the person that does that is you just said is that nurse. So what do you believe people need to know about the role of nursing in driving health care outcomes? Because I think that this conversation is driving to that point to sit there and say, you know, there is a role of the nurse in driving outcomes. And to your point, for often, you know, they’re not paid by the people that they care for. They are basically reimbursed as being a value of as effective it is in the room rates as the bed or the chair or the equipment that they’re using. And for very long time, nurses have, in a sense on the payment side, have been marginalized to saying they just exist. They exist as part of that health care ecosystem. And where that value is, is not in the nursing care, but the value is and by what the physicians do or the occupational therapist do. And when you actually look at that time study out of those twenty-four hours a day, those only come into a smidgen of an hour of those days. So tell me, like, what things the role of nursing doing to improve health outcomes and also drive better business for systems or those that are outside of health care systems?

P.K. Scheerle:
Well, certainly value-based payment and the idea of pay for performance and outcome-based payments. And the bundle is driving toward accountable care. Thank goodness. But the whole system, if you ever need to understand anything, of course, we all know this, follow the dollar. The whole system is set up over time with incentives, sticks, and carrots that in an industrial society may have made sense and even in an information society may have made sense. But in a digital society, it probably doesn’t make sense the way it is. We can see in our future that the only waiting rooms and health care should be the clinicians waiting for the patient. So the idea that all of healthcare has to change, if you’re not lucky enough to have a doctor or a nurse in your family, you feel completely out of control. When you or your loved one gets a diagnosis. You don’t know who to trust, who to call, where to go, what to do, who to get a second opinion, who to believe. You go on seven different websites, you get seven different treatment plans, you go to seven different cancer places, seven different oncologists tell you seven different things in the same town. It could cost you 40 different amounts to have a baby in 40 different places in the same parish or county. It’s broke bad. And so the global view of the nurse and their ability to drive and affect, change, innovation, discipline to their practice and procedure. The time is right for clinicians to gather with professional managers and bankers because, again, follow the dollar. And bond ratings for health systems are very important. Remember, also, you’re going from a bricks-and-mortar type of operation to increasingly a digital operation. If you think about early disease management and you think about the early diabetic disease management companies, it was all around the work of the nurse. We would look at their 16000 lives on insulin for this payer in New Orleans. And on one end of the spectrum are the people that. Yes, are insulin-dependent. They’re well, and they’re always going to be well. And then over here, you have train wrecks that are frequent flyers, and they need something completely different. And the nurse can do everything there. And how do you create a neighborhood nurse for diabetics and how do you create access? Can you imagine the day where a little kid falls out the tree and doesn’t want to tell their mother, and they’re in Zimbabwe and they take a photograph on their smartphone and they hit the button and the nurse or the doctor says, you’re going to be fine, son, wash it off real good and you don’t need stitches. Oh, he’s out eight years old. He’d taken out all the middlemen in your future value creation in a digital-AI-based, personalized medicine predictive model outcome where families and patients can count and trust the nurse, to be the navigator, to be the case manager, if you will, the coach, the chief, the mentor of that family’s health.

Rebecca Love:
And it’s so interesting. We went all the way from value-based care to precision medicine. And to your point, I think that those combined factors, driving that outcomes and health is going to be the driving factor as opposed to reimbursement by procedure means that the position of the nurse is going to add such value to the ability to drive health care outcomes. And I think to your point, the technology is there. The technology exists to drive precision medicine using A.I. and new technologies to basically able to create independent treatment plans for individuals as opposed to always going to the same set of treatment plans for what was based off the middle, which we know does not work nearly 20 to 40 percent of all our treatment plans. So I think you’re absolutely right that nurses are going to be central and pivotal to that conversation and also the new models of care that are going to be developed. And so, you know, we started this conversation and you had mentioned that, you know, by the bedside, we’ve done 75,000 things that have developed new products by the bedside to deliver better care because those devices did not work for us. And do you have an example that comes to mind for you when your nursing team came up with a really innovative or great solution to a problem and this might be from years ago or this might be from something recently that faced, you know, you and Gifted during Covid? Was there something that the team came together and you said these nurses are brilliant? Is there something that you would like to highlight?

P.K. Scheerle:
You know, there are a lot of things I could answer. There are a whole lot. But it’s interesting, the very first one I thought of is probably the least Whiz-Bang. But it was in the 80s and it was at Charity Hospital in New Orleans. And it was kind of this we called it the respiratory unit. It was the 100 beds. And it was a very hard place to work. And it had very sick people, but not wasn’t a pulmonary ICU. It was basically a med surge. And it was a very hard, mentally hard place to work physically hard, total care that C100, as it was called, unit became known as the HIV unit, and then ultimately the AIDS unit. But in those days, it was the respiratory unit. And I watched a group of nurses figure out a way to staff themselves in a way that met their needs. Had that place covered 24/7 and gave dignity and created a nurse-run operation that the physicians loved, patients loved, the families loved. And it was all around the innovation of these nurses ponying up together and saying, we will do our own scheduling. Period. That was the ticket to the kingdom. And in those days, that was pretty avant-garde. That was remembered, do the mathematical model here. You got shift differentials days, nights, weekends. You’re board certified. Just think of all the reasons you kill this good idea. So you think about that. That was very innovative. And because of the acknowledgment and the work towards dignity and we had a wonderful physician, Dr. Jim Store, and a wonderful chief nurse Marlin Shoots that believed in dignity. And as a result of that, those nurses went on to open what was known here as Lazarus House, which is where you got to go when you got well enough to go. And so that is an early example in my career of something that I have always known the nurse holds in their quiver. It’s one more arrow in the nurse’s quiver.

Rebecca Love:
You know, these stories of new models of care and delivering care, especially for those who are most unable to provide for themselves those most desperate and left hungry and bankrupt and in these places of such torment, because health care, to your point on our systems, often to earlier conversation you had following that health care dollar often leaves one without that humanity. We discharge early. There are not places to manage those things that go on in the external portions of one’s life, which is beyond just the disease which we’re treating. And nurses fundamentally seem to have always stepped into those moments to remember the humanity of their patients. And I hear these stories. And what you’re just saying from a respiratory unit led out to Lazarus Health, which is a new model of caring for individuals in care and taking care of that whole person and family. And that is what always inspires me about nursing, is that health care in time seems to be so singularly focused on that disease that that one check box, that one surgery, that they realize that external to it, there are so many factors. And it is the nurse who always clings to that and represents the population. And I love hearing you say those stories, because as we start to accumulate them. One thing that always stands out to me most recently is how much of the impact of nursing has been forgotten across history, how we have not written down these stories, and why these conversations of the nurses that I’m talking to are so important because they are finally starting to document for the first time the stories of nurses making these impacts. And it’s been far too long that we haven’t captured them. And I want to thank everyone for being here to listen to them, because this is not only about our past in our history, but it’s about the future of health care. And P.K., I want to take a step back, because you in nursing are one of the most successful nurses in the history of the United States if not the world. And I think that when people meet you or hear about you, they assume that the path has probably not totally been easy, but that it’s you know, they look at you and they forget about those struggles, They see the success, but not necessarily behind the screen. So what has been one of the biggest setbacks that you’ve experienced and what was key to the learning that you gathered from it?

P.K. Scheerle:
It’s going to be a funny answer. When I began American nursing, I had a cosigner. And he’s a wonderful guy, his name was Greg Vergis and everything was ducky. He co-signs the note and I ran the company. We had 50/50 ownership. Then he got married to a beautiful girl, Melanie Breeding, and he said she wants a house. I can’t be the cosigner. So I needed about a hundred and sixty-eight thousand dollars, and I had about six hundred thousand of hundred ninety-day receivables. And I went to seven banks and seven banks told me no. And the eighth one told me I was relatively pretty and obviously somewhat intelligent, if I could find someone to marry me I wouldn’t need all that money. And so I was a little discouraged and had to go to work that night in the ICU. So back at it the next day, I put my same navy blue suit on and my nylons and closed-toed shoes. And I went and saw number eight or number nine. And when I finished my story, I was almost out of my chair because I knew it was just going to say no. And he said, you know, my wife’s a nurse. His name was Blake Cayman. You know, my wife’s a nurse and I believe in what you’re talking about and we’re going to give you that loan. I said, that’s it. You can say that and it’s going to happen. And he said, yeah, and it did. But that set back that day after eight banks and thinking I wasn’t going to make my payroll, that was the setback. There’s a lot of them. If I didn’t make the mistake the first time I went back and made it the second or third time. And I still make them. I think if you don’t get out over your skis once in a while, you’re probably not skiing fast enough and you’re never going to have a moon shot if you play it safe. If you think about our society and the world and the moonshots, you know, you can get bigger than your mind can handle. For me, anyway, and in the global warming issues and in the inequality of humans to humans. But if you think about the easy things to fix, everyone that gets a cancer diagnosis can meet with a wonderful, well-trained cancer nurse on Zoom. That answers every question as access to every innovation in the world in real-time. Why not start that company? And we need it. Come on. That simple. What if every parent in the whole world or in any county with a child, in school, 24/7 could call in Zoom, the school nurse, and get it handled, and so the kid doesn’t miss school the next day, mom doesn’t miss work. That isn’t rocket science. We’re in the middle of a big shift and the moon shots are there. Do you want to talk about caring for our seniors? You know, if you look at the Japanese, no one ever expects to put a parent in a facility. COVID scared the life out of people, putting their parents and loved ones in nursing homes. And the idea of our generation or my generation, let alone yours, you’re not even going to recognize the long-term care. But, you know, my age, we’re in our early, the late 50s, early 60s. We’re saying we’re going to make sure we’re set up at somebody’s house. We’re all going to live. There are going to be eight of us. And having a massage therapist, a chef, you know, whatever. We’re going to use student nurses, student physical therapists, you know, we’ll get free labor anyway. But dammit, we’re not going to go where somebody bathes us at 4:30 in the morning. And so you think about the innovation needs of a society. There is no profession in a better position for investment banking or private equity or family offices to invest in a group of nurses who are going to change a societal wrong, and they’re going to make fortunes while they do it. And if you look back at Ed Goldstein, God bless his brilliance and VIP M.D. and the whole idea around concierge medicine. Think of the concierge nurse, the young ladies out in the mayo, nurses. I’m embarrassed. I don’t remember their first names out in Phoenix that are doing concierge nursing. They are going to change the world with their vision. And so the moonshots within our profession and the cry of our trust in public nursing, the most trusted of all professions for 50 years, except for firemen and 9/11, I voted for them, too. But what I’m saying is there are all these problems and there’s only there’s one profession that wants to solve them and has the skill set to solve them and to treasure everyone in the same span of control. Nurses treasure good physicians. We treasure good rad tech. We treasure orderlies, utter gentle with our skinny little old folks to get the play under for the chest x. You know, those things matter.

Rebecca Love:
You know, it’s really interesting that the things that matter P.K. and to your point, the things that are going to change are those moonshots are the simple solutions that we seem to skim over and that nurses are front and center to witnessing every day and just believing in themselves that they are able to grab the reins and create something and build something and do something. To change those outcomes is fundamental to us moving health care forward. And when you talked about the access to capital, it is a story I hear from nurse after nurse again, from woman after woman again, who sit there and say, I need money to grow my business. I have this great idea. I have payroll coming down and I keep being denied time and time again. And I think the national studies are showing this, that the dichotomy of access to capital largely for women, largely for nurses and health care, and it’s almost out of reach. And so I just wanted to say that thank you for sharing that story, because there’s been so many of us that it is that access to capital, that moment when you are about to lose everything, because anybody who has started a business that hasn’t almost lost it all is, to your point, probably not out far enough in front of their skis. And it is stressful. I was there. It was incredibly stressful. I don’t know if I could really ever do it fully again, because I was to your point, you know, the stress that it puts you under. But it’s still going and holding on to that belief that your vision and one person that I love, Brian Lukic, I once said to me, he goes, you know, you have the PhD in your innovation. And we believe more than anybody else. And as long as you keep going, it’s that ninth or tenth or twentieth person, they will say yes when you keep doing what you’re doing. So they put pressure on math.

P.K. Scheerle:
No means not yet. It does ever mean now. And you’re talking about CathWear, right?

Rebecca Love:
Yes.

P.K. Scheerle:
That’s awesome. I’m so impressed. And you want to talk about God’s work. You think about people that wear a catheter and have urine coming out of their body and the dignity he has given people with his innovation, I love it. I’ve never met him. Can’t wait to meet him.

Rebecca Love:
I met him five years ago. And as with the things that it’s just been so great to reconnect. And actually, I hope he’s going to join us one day here on Outcomes Rocket podcast. I love that you’re speaking just because our audience, our audience, who is here, they have that ability to change this. They have that ability to make access to capital for nurses more within reach and to make it more easily accessible and also outline for them what they need to do so that nurses can bring their ideas forward.

P.K. Scheerle:
Think about this. Every health system, even rural hospitals, everyone is struggling with retention of nurses.

Rebecca Love:
Every single one. I think it’s every hospital, regardless of city to something. Everyone right now health system, regardless if it’s a nursing home, a BNA, a hospital system, everybody, you’re absolutely right, is dealing with retention of nurses. Keep going.

P.K. Scheerle:
Just think. If one in every city or town said we are going to have, you know, capital for startup innovation of nurses at our Lord Have Mercy Hospital. And if you stay here and you’re here, you accumulate the ability to bid on or get the resources for your startup. It’s just like universities. Maybe that hospital has the recurring revenue forever of five percent. I don’t know. But in other words, if you want to retain nurses and you going to be a nurse magnet, you know, you want to retain people that are out there inventing, starting, moving, shaking, engaging others. The stickiness of a nursing job is around its co-workers and adequate staffing. And if those needs are met, why not be icing on the cake? You have the money hospitals. You have the money health systems. Fund your nurse entrepreneurs fund your brilliant clinicians with better ideas and take them to market.

Rebecca Love:
I love that. And I hope from your mouth to the ears of all those who are leading in healthcare, because I do believe that if we’re going to change the future of health care, investing in those who understand those problems inherently are going to be meaning that we’re going to change what happens for patients. I can’t believe we’re almost at our time, but P.K. what are you most excited about today? What is there that right now you think to yourself, this is why I do what I do and what makes me excited about the future?

P.K. Scheerle:
I’m very excited about the things that bottleneck the care of people. And I’m passionate around equity in care and dignity and care. And I think the idea of not for profit health care is historic in nature. And other than paying taxes, I don’t know that there’s a whole big difference in, I mean, certainly mission driven systems are wonderful to work in. They truly, truly, truly are and do an exceptional job at motivating their nursing staffs. But the idea of what are your community’s issues? How do you make money solving them? How do you empower more people while making money solving them? And how do you create work for people who want it but don’t have it? How do you take if there’s two million bits of knowledge to be a registered nurse? If I’m 16 and I took care of my grandmother for two months while she died, I probably got already through the first 80 of them. So I should be able to use that to become a nurse aide or a nurse tech or an LPN. I should be able to in sophomore in high school, call it vocational training or whatever you will. I should have a clear path if I want to go into health care and into nursing of step by step, easy, schmoozy, reasonable cost to enter the workforce and work towards becoming a nurse. And the idea of job creation is so exciting to me because you change a family forever. And that is probably something that I will spend some time on, is making sure young people see themselves as able in more ways than one to become nurses.

Rebecca Love:
You know, I love that mission and I love that vision that you have for the future. I spent eight years teaching at Bunker Hill Community College in Boston, and I say time and time again, it was the best job that I ever did. And I loved every minute of it because I felt like I stood on the cusp of people who had experienced such hardships, such poverty, such transformation, that life was beating them down at every turn on their academic side or their future in terms of opportunity. And when they got into nursing school, and I could help them pass the NCLEX and get through all the courses that just seemed to be almost insurmountable, especially for second degree learners or those who have come out of foster care. And nursing was that bridge. And I’ve always fundamentally believed that nursing takes one out of poverty and puts them solidly into a futureth at they are going to be able to keep the electricity on. They’re going to put food on the table. They’re going to be able to send their kids to college. And somehow, in the course of the last especially 20 years, we’ve seemed to fallen out of a focus that nursing is a career that is going to provide you with more than a job. And I love to hear that someone like you is going to focus some of their attention to creating that next generation of nurses, because if there is a time to do it, it’s coming out of COVID, because just like moments in time, things happen that shift our culture. And for this window, I think we have that opportunity to rebrand and reposition nursing to the world, to say, if you want to change health care, if you want to be a great entrepreneur, if you want to save patients lives, if you want to do more with that passion inside of you in every day, feel alive, you want to be a nurs. And an example like P.K. Scheerle, one of the most successful nurses in the history of the United States, from not only the economic impact, but from the impact you have had across multiple verticals and people’s lives, is the best example of nursing today. So, P.K., I want to thank you so much for spending this time with us today, for educating our listeners who from around the world tune in to hear from extraordinary nurse leaders and how they have transformed the future of health and health care. So, P.K.,thank you so much for being with us today.

P.K. Scheerle:
I’ve enjoyed it a lot. Rebecca, and you should be pretty proud of yourself, my friend. I sure am. Thank you.

Rebecca Love:
Well, that is an honor coming from you, P.K. So, everyone, this is Rebecca Love with Outcomes Rocket Nursing. Please tune in again in the future to hear from other incredible, inspiring nurses who are transforming in the future of health and health care. And together, we are going to do more for patients and for the future together. Thanks for tuning in.

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Things You’ll Learn

  • You are competent beyond the credit they give themselves. 
  • Play the whistle and keep it a focus on the team. 
  • War is too important to be left to the generals.
  • A nurse should be on every hospital board.
  • The value-based payment and the idea of pay for performance and outcome-based payments are driving toward accountable care. 
  • We’re in the middle of a big shift and the moon shots are there.
  • Nursing is the most trusted profession for 50 years. 
  • There are many problems and there’s only there’s one profession that wants to solve them and has the skill set to solve them and to treasure everyone in the same span of control. 
  • The dichotomy of access to capital largely for women, for nurses in healthcare, is almost out of reach. 
  • And as long as you keep going, it’s that ninth or tenth or twentieth person, they will say yes when you keep doing what you’re doing.

 

Resources

Websites: https://www.giftedhealthcare.com/ https://www.nurseseverywhere.com/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/pk-scheerle-rn/