Goal is to use nurses' knowledge to improve quality LANSING, Mich. - Sparrow is among an elite group of hospitals selected to participate in a national project in which nurse leaders work on innovative ways to care for patients. Sparrow is one of some 45 hospitals nationwide, and only two in Michigan, participating in the Center for Care Innovation and Transformation initiative. The project is overseen by the American Organization of Nurse Executives. The initiative is at the forefront of a national movement to engage front-line staff in devising changes to improve nurses' delivery of care and daily work lives. It means new ideas for transforming care don't just come from hospital leaders but from nurses and other team members who spend the most time with patients and their families. Nurse leaders from Sparrow and other hospitals will participate in educational sessions and other forums through 2013, sharing ideas on transforming patient care and improving the hospital culture. "It is exciting. It helps nurses be creative, use their critical thinking skills and really get involved in developing best practices to improve patient care," says Elizabeth Henry, Senior Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer. The focus is on empowering people such as nurse managers and staff nurses to tackle the major issues that directly affect patients. "Nurses are with patients 24/7 and can identify ways to improve the patient's experience. They see things to improve, and this gives them the ability to enact change," says Kim Alexander, Director of Critical Care Services. "This initiative will help us identify systems and processes at the bedside, and we will share that nationally."