Pathway Program Director Spotlight- Sherri Watts

Pathway Program Director Spotlight

Sherri Watts, DNP, RN, Pathway Program Director

HCA Florida St. Lucie Hospital

What did achieving the Pathway designation mean to you, personally and as a member of your organization?


Attaining the initial Pathway designation for my hospital and first in our division, was one of the most personally rewarding achievements in my nursing career. I was new to the state and organization, so gaining the hospitals’ trust in my ability to lead them through a successful journey was essential. I engaged all clinical and non-clinical employees in PTE education to help them understand their line of sight in the hospital’s journey. I was overwhelmed with gratitude when I saw how many employees from all areas and roles appeared for the ANCC Call. Their display of support demonstrated to me that they truly understood the impact their role has on our patient care, employee engagement and hospital culture. I’ve never been as proud to work in an organization that is so internally motivated to do the right thing; not because it checks a box, nor for recognition, but because that’s who they are even when nobody is watching.

How do you feel the PTE framework supports your nurses at any given time?


I believe the PTE framework provides an effective external evidence-based structure designed to support nurses in two ways. First, it reinforces their awareness of the hospitals’ structures, processes, and resources already available and designed to support their nursing practice, practice environment, and well-being. Second, nurses can utilize the PTE framework as a vehicle when advocating for identified needs, resources, or opportunities for improvement.

What are your strategies for sustaining your PTE designation?

As we begin our re-designation journey, my top three priorities will be to:

o   Assess: conduct a gap analysis and communicate a clear action plan to strengthen identified opportunities for improvement.

o   Engage: ensure PTE continues to be a standing agenda item on our shared decision-making councils; develop new interactive education tools that highlight the 2024 PTE framework, and continue Pathway Pause education rounds in the units and areas where nurses practice. 

o   Evaluate: monitor direct care nurse participation in shared decision- making, selection of well-being activities, obtaining specialty certifications, and proposing PTE Element of Performance (EOP) narratives.