QSEN Competency #1: Patient-Centered Care


QSEN Competency #1:  Patient-centered Care

This content area emphasizes key patient-centered care points that the pre-licensure graduate should be competent in upon graduation.  Definition:  Recognize the patient or designee as the source of control and full partner in providing compassionate and coordinated care based on respect for patient’s preferences, values, and needs.

Recognition for the need of patient-centered care can be traced back to the Institute of Medicines (IOM) Crossing the Quality Chasm which suggested that “caregivers provide care that is respectful and responsive to patient preferences, needs, and values, and that patient values guide clinical decision making” (IOM,  2001, p. 40).  As seasoned caregivers, nurses realize that most of what we do rotates around the patient.  But, students often get caught up in daily tasks and forget the true reason they are providing care, the patient.  How do nurse educators get students to understand that if care is patient-centered, improved patient outcomes and satisfaction will follow?  Below are some examples of activities with an emphasis on patient-centered care.




  1. https://www.qsen.org/strategies-submission/nurse-as-the-leader-of-the-team-huddle.–an-unfolding-oncology-case-study

Submitted by Kimberly Silver Dunker, DNP, RN.  This is an unfolding case study designed for nursing students to learn about caring for a patient with pancreatic cancer.  This case study addresses the following competencies:  patient-centered care, teamwork and collaboration, safety, evidence-based practice, and quality improvement.  Students actively participate by answering questions as they work through the case study which includes video clips.  At the end, students could complete reflective writing on how this enhanced their knowledge, skills, and attitudes related to patient-centered care and team huddles.

  1. https://www.qsen.org/strategies-submission/making-qsen-visible-in-the-classroom%3A-innovative-use-of-in-class-care-mapping-activity

Submitted by Karla Rodriguez, DNP, CNE, RN, co-authors include Karyn Boyar, DNP, RN, FNP-BC; James Weidel, PhD, FNP-BC, PMHNP-BC; Emerson Ea, DNP, APRN, CNE.  This classroom activity has students work in small groups to mind map the care for an older adult from a scenario focusing on safety, patient-centered care, and fall prevention.




  1. https://www.qsen.org/strategies-submission/clinical-assessment-tool%3A-teaching-strategy-for-safety-and-patient-centered-care

Submitted by Diana Girdley, MS, RN.  This clinical activity focuses on the use of a clinical evaluation tool that students complete along with their head-to-toe assessment for safety and providing patient centered care.  During post conference the students share their results and interventions they took.




  1. https://www.qsen.org/strategies-submission/little-room-of-errors

Submitted by Robin Arends, MS, CNP.  This clinical activity has students entering a “set-up” room to identify potential errors or hazards for the patient.  Students are allowed 15 minutes to make observations and record them.  Then students debrief with the instructor and the instructor points out errors or misses that no one identified and discuss the importance.



Originator of competency highlight: Laurie Simmons, MSN RN CNE; Associate Professor; Kirkwood Community College; Marion, IA.