In 1981, the American Academy of Nursing organized a task force to study reasons why some hospitals were able to attract and retain nurses despite the nursing shortage. One hundred fifty hospitals were studied nationwide with 41 determined to be "magnets" for registered nurses (RNs).
The task force identified 14 characteristics that these hospitals possessed that created a "magnetic" environment which attracted and retained nurses. These attributes became known as the "Forces of Magnetism."
Magnet recognition is a prestigious and coveted international award given to organizations that demonstrate the Forces of Magnetism in innovative and dynamic ways. The goals of the Magnet program are to promote quality in an environment that supports professional nursing practice, disseminate successful nursing practices and promote positive patient outcomes.
In Magnet hospitals,
- nurses are empowered and accountable for their practice.
- patients have better outcomes and are more satisfied.
- professional advancement is encouraged and rewarded.
- there is greater staff involvement in decision-making.
There are more than 275 Magnet hospitals in the country (about 5 percent of all hospitals) with six in Massachusetts.