Faculty lead in quality and safety

Internationally recognized quality and safety experts bring valuable insight to School, curriculum

The University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Nursing’s quality and safety faculty experts incorporate principals of improving patient safety at all levels of the School’s curriculum. As internationally recognized experts, they also bring personal experience, practical application and expertise to the classroom and faculty development.

Photo: Pat Patrician Pat Patrician, PhD, RN, FAAN

Professor and Rachel Z. Booth Endowed Chair in Nursing

Patricia Patrician joined UAB in 2008 after having served 26 years in the U.S. Army Nurse Corps. Her research centers on nursing work environments, nursing care quality, patient safety and other related topics. She teaches in the School’s PhD Program.

She was named the second holder of the School’s Rachel Z. Booth Endowed Chair in Nursing in 2017, which distinguishes a faculty member with a record of external funding, research, scholarly achievement, publication and excellence in mentoring, as well as exemplary professional and academic citizenship.

Patrician, alongside Associate Professor Rebecca Miltner, PhD, RN, CNP, NEA-BC, is leading the Deep South QSEN Regional Collaborative at UAB, an initiative to train nurse educators, practicing nurses and nurse leaders on the importance of instilling quality and safety values within the nursing and health care workforce. Patrician also serves on the QSEN Board of Directors and as a senior scholar for the Birmingham Veterans Affairs Quality Scholars (VAQS) Program site. This program promotes leadership in quality improvement research and emphasizes interprofessional learning.

Patrician was named an American Academy of Nursing Fellow in 2009, and she was selected for the Healthcare Leadership Academy in 2010. In 2017, she received the Sam Brown Bridge Builder Award, which recognizes UAB faculty with a commitment to facilitating collaborations and partnerships across campus. In 2018, she received the 2018 Graduate Dean’s Excellence in Mentorship Award.

Photo: Susie Miltner Suzie Miltner, PhD, RN, CNL, NEA-BC

Associate Professor and Director, Educationally Focused Partnerships

Suzie Miltner first came to UAB in 2010 for a postdoctoral fellowship as a VA National Quality Scholar (VAQS). She joined UAB School of Nursing in 2012, bringing more than 30 years of clinical and leadership experience in military, private and Veterans Affairs acute care settings as well as nursing education. Miltner is an associate professor in the School’s Nursing Helath Systems Administration specialty track as well as a nurse scientist at the Birmingham VA Medical Center.

Miltner’s research covers improvement science, survey methods, quality of nursing care in acute care settings and quality measurement. She is a recognized leader in quality improvement efforts and has driven quality improvement in several health care organizations, including her ongoing work as a facilitator for VA improvement teams.

She also worked with Associate Dean of Clinical and Global Partnerships Maria Shirey, PhD, MBA, MS, RN, NEA-BC, ANEF, FACHE, FAAN, to develop leadership training for Advanced Practice Provider leads in the UAB Nursing Partnership.

Along with Pat Patrician, PhD, RN, FAAN, Miltner leads the Deep South QSEN Regional Collaborative at UAB, an initiative to train nurse educators, practicing nurses and nurse leaders on the importance of instilling quality and safety values within the nursing and health care workforce.

Polancich Shea web newShea Polancich, PhD, RN

Assistant Professor and Assistant Dean for Clinical Innovation

Shea Polancich joined UAB School of Nursing in 2013, bringing more than 20 years of experience in quality and patient safety. Polancich’s primary focus is understanding errors in the clinical environment, and her work focuses on using the best evidence to redesign workflow and improve processes.

Polancich’s work was instrumental in establishing and developing the UAB Nursing Partnership, a collaborative academic-practice partnership between UAB Medicine, UAB Hospital and the UAB School of Nursing. She serves as the Partnership’s liaison between the School and UAB Health System. Polancich also helped establish and manage the nurse-led Heart Failure Clinic.

Through her work with the UAB Health System, Polancich has used quality improvement tools to better manage skin events and injuries by developing innovative programs of reporting and researching predictions to improve future care.

“Through the Partnership, School of Nursing faculty and UAB Hospital staff work in collaboration to improve, research and translate research on a daily basis,” Polancich said. “This work not only improves care, but opens doors for and demonstrates the importance of quality improvement experts in health systems.”

In 2018, the UAB Nursing Partnership received the New Era for Academic Nursing Award, presented by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.

In 2014, Polancich received the UAB School of Nursing Innovations in Classroom award, and she was a National Quality Forum Steering Committee Representative for the Development of Patient Safety Whitepaper.

Last modified on February 05, 2020

Upcoming Events