Regional Spotlight on Nursing: Texas & New Mexico

August 29, 2019

The Texas/New Mexico region serves a 62 county area with approximately 1.1 million people. This population is supported by Covenant’s tertiary care facility, a separately-licensed children’s hospital, 3 smaller community hospitals, a long-term care facility, the community’s only behavioral health unit, a cancer center, hospice, 2 busy medical groups, and clinics throughout the region. Covenant School of Nursing and Covenant School of Radiography graduate more than 140 new healthcare workers each year.

Excellence in Caregiver Engagement:

  • Nursing response rate was 92% with the majority (67%) of health, safety, and environment scores above the 90th percentile
  • RN vacancy rate decreased from 7.5% to a low of 3.7%
  • 12 of the “Great 25 Nurses” on the South Plains were Covenant nurses
  • Strong participation in the Clinical Academy with recent development of a regional steering council
  • Implementation of Covenant Culture 99, a program for nurses to recognize those non-nursing caregivers who support and enhance nursing careImplementation of extensive caregiver safety programs and training to improve security in the ED


Excellence in Nursing:

  • Covenant Medical Center (CMC) submitted its Magnet document in June 2019
  • Beacon Award designation achieved by MICU and Oncology/Stem Cell units in 2019
  • The Palliative Care Unit, the Bariatric Unit, and Stem Cell Unit recently received re-accreditation as a Center of Excellence by The Joint Commission.
  • Re-designation as a Primary Stoke Center occurred in February of this year
  • Grace Medical Center was recognized with an Outstanding Patient Experience Award
  • 17 Covenant nurses were invited to present their research and evidence-based practice initiatives at the Sigma Theta Tau International Research Congress in Canada this August
  • Covenant School of Nursing was ranked #17 of the 200 programs in Texas, achieving a 99% NCLEX pass rate


Excellence in Patient Care Delivery:

  • Commitment to the Fall Bundle has resulted in a 50% decrease in fall rates for 2019
  • The Walking Warrior program supporting early ambulation has been implemented regionally
  • Clinical nurses have endorsed our Commit to Sit initiative to enhance patient experience
  • S7 Bariatric Unit and S8 Urology Unit were recognized as Zero Harm Heroes for CAUTI/CLABSI
  • Care Management provided leadership for our Med-to-Bed program implementation
  • Regional Telesitter program implemented this year with CMC as the Hub site
  • Covenant Plainview was the first to launch the Telestroke program
  • Two APRNs were added to compliment the Trauma team’s delivery of care
  • Web Cam system for virtual visitation in the NICU was implemented in April


As the Chief Nurse Executive for the Texas/New Mexico region, I’m beyond honored to work alongside some of the most compassionate and dedicated nursing professionals who are truly committed to our healing Mission.

Karen Baggerly, RN, CNE