Shirley Paulson

I directly credit this program for contributing to my promotion as the Kaiser Regional Director of Patient Care Services for NCAL.

Shirley Paulson graduated from the Executive Leadership Doctor of Nursing Practice program at the University of San Francisco in Fall 2017.

Shirley is currently the Regional Director for Clinical Adult Services in Northern California. Shirley’s interprofessional work across the region improves patient care through the integration of evidence-based knowledge into clinical practice.

What is the name of your capstone project/dissertation title?

Implementation of an Innovative Early Warning System: Evidence-based Strategies for Ensuring System-wide Nursing Adoption

What impact did your project have on your career?

I am confident that participating in the DNP has directly allowed me to advance my career and contributed to the reason I was promoted to Regional Director, Patient Care Services for Northern California.

What impact did your project have on quality metrics, change in practice, and/or clinical outcomes data?

Reduction in LOS, reduction in mortality 30 day, 90 day

Please describe how your project has continued, or how it has continued to make an impact on your unit post-graduation.

I have been the nurse leader for a predictive analytics tool called Advance Alert Monitor (AAM). I started with this initiative during my DNP in 2015, and our team has spread and implemented to 13 NCAL Kaiser facilities. We will have spread AAM to all 21 facilities by end of 2018, reducing Length of stay and improving mortality for thousands of patients. I have presented on this topic at the 2018 National Quality Conference and have been asked by several Executive leaders to spread this nationally.

How has this degree program affected your professional growth and leadership?

Through the Kaiser Nursing Scholar program, I have been able to graduate with a Doctorate in Nursing Practice from USF. This has been a valuable investment in my professional career, with emphasis on evidence-based practice, technology and informatics, population health, and leadership development. It has prepared me to take on this new promotion to Regional Director for NCAL and has helped validate the leadership knowledge that is so essential to a learning organization.

How has this degree program impacted your personal life?

I had no personal life during my doctoral program! Honestly, between full time work and the full time doctoral program expectations, I was quite busy for the two years of the program. You really need a supportive family to manage your personal life! It was worth it in the end, however. My family is all so proud of me, and I feel I was a good role model to my kids regarding the importance of a strong work ethic and the result of satisfaction and pride in accomplishment.

What “words of wisdom” would you like to share with potential scholars interested in advancing their education through a Nurse Scholars Academy program?

The Nurse Scholars Academy offers a unique opportunity to advance your education. The support that you get through the Academy, both financially and professionally, is incredibly worthwhile and can provide the basis for your future growth as an advanced nursing professional. It is so much work, but so worth it! You can expand your professional horizons while still maintaining your job, and you can apply your school work to projects that can directly improve what you are doing with your current job. I am so grateful to the Nursing Scholars Academy and to the leaders who supported me through the program!

Is there anything else you would like to share with the Nurse Scholars Academy?

Just my gratitude for this fantastic program. I am so honored to have been chosen for inclusion in the DNP program, am so appreciative of all I have learned, and I directly credit this program for contributing to my promotion as the Kaiser Regional Director of Patient Care Services for NCAL.