Assessing the Components of Clinical Competence

April 1, 2021
April 1, 2021

You have to assess multiple healthcare employee attributes to get a complete picture of his or her level of clinical competency. In our article excerpted here, “Using Artificial Intelligence to Assess Critical Thinking for Healthcare,” HealthStream’s Joe Caracci, MBA, BSN, RN; AVP, Clinical Assessments writes about the importance of measuring knowledge, skill level, and emotional intelligence in staff members and then instituting measures to enhance their ability to create better outcomes.

Assess Knowledge and Assign Learning to Make Up for Gaps

First, you can assess an individual’s grasp of knowledge and assign learning to make up for any gaps in understanding, from a resource like HealthStream’s CEPath or through other learning content from our broad array of content partners.

Skill Levels Are Very Important

Next, it is also possible to assess any staff member’s level of skill. For example, when a nurse begins to work at a hospital, she must identify her level of experience on many different activities, such as inserting an IV, managing a chest tube, and a wide array of other technical skills. Then, for areas where she has acknowledged limited or a complete lack of experience, we can guide remediation with a skills reference that includes training like that available through our CEPath continuing education content library. After reviewing any assigned material, the nurse can do a post-test to show that she now knows what is covered. In many cases a preceptor in the field will then validate that the nurse has now mastered that skill. The preceptor will verify mastery and include that verification as part of her record.

Emotional Intelligence/Attitude Lends Itself to Meeting Various Challenges

Another name for the third component, attitude, is emotional intelligence. HealthStream offers a Behavioral Fit assessment to measure on eight unique behavioral competencies. For instance, we might provide a report on an individual clinician that says, “They’re less adaptable.” That means that they tend towards more routine tasks versus a need for a variety of challenges to remain engaged.

The article includes:

  • Competence Determines Care Success
  • The Components of Competency
  • Healthcare Emergencies Don’t Come with Multiple Choice Questions
  • Using AI to Better Measure Clinical Judgment


Download the article here.

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