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Marcie Hopkins, University of Utah Health
Building a Nursing Community of Practice
Strategic communications administrator Bridgette Maitre outlines a new way to connect, learn, and build community within the Department of Nursing.
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hese were some of the words we heard when rounding this past spring as part of the Department of Nursing Health Taskforce. Try as we might to communicate often and effectively, in a 24/7 organization with a department of over 6,000 professionals, it’s clear we need a better way to stay connected. 

Building a Nursing Community of Practice 

Beginning this fall, we will begin to develop a dedicated Community of Practice to support the vast communication needs of the Department of Nursing.  

Communities of practice (CoP) are an evidence-based method for professional learning. CoP’s bring together groups with a shared interest—virtually and in-person—to learn from each other and improve over time.  

Here are just a few changes you will begin to see:  

Better, more frequent updates. Every two weeks, we’ll share must-know updates in our new department-wide email newsletter: “Nursing Community of Practice.” All issues will be archived here on Pulse. Updates will be bulleted and linked directly to details—no hunting for information! We’ll also include 1-pagers and materials to support in-person meetings and discussions. 

Peer insight sharing. Partnering with Accelerate Learning Community, we will continuously develop and share articles that explain complex topics, highlight teams and individuals from throughout our department, and learn together by exploring topics in health care equity, improvement, leadership, and resilience. 

Department of Nursing-led development. This fall, we will open a call for contributors and editors. Anyone in the Department of Nursing is welcome to contribute articles, team highlights, and/or best practices. An editorial team of frontline experts with communications talent will help identify topics, provide peer review, and guide content development. 

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Learning from your peers, where and when you need it.

Gather to build connection. Safety permitting, we’ll return to in-person and hybrid gatherings—a spring poster fair celebration of your impactful work, a series of book clubs, guest speakers and internal talent with practice insights, along with teambuilding efforts to shape and foster connection. 

Trust and Transparency 

The Department of Nursing is large—we span 18 hospitals and clinics all over the Wasatch front. 6,200+ nursing professionals and clinical support team members represent over 230 different roles— the engine behind nearly two million patient visits every year. Connection across this group is no small feat, but we’re committed to you. 

Real teams know each other, trust each other, and wouldn’t want to let each other down. Our goal is to increase transparency through our communications and build greater connection across our department.  

Stay tuned and look forward to our “Nursing Community of Practice” newsletter every other Friday.   


Bridgette Maitre

Strategic Communications Project Administrator, University of Utah Health

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