The Reading Hospital today announced the May 31, 2012, retirement of Donna Weber, MSN, MBA, RN, NEA-BC, as Vice President & Chief Nursing Officer after serving The Hospital and the Berks County community for 31 years.
Weber, appointed in 1996 as the first Chief Nursing Officer at The Reading Hospital, led the evolution from top-down management of inpatient nursing services into organizational-wide shared governance, providing nurses with a voice in determining nursing practice, standards, and quality of care.
Under this model, 1,590 nurses from inpatient, outpatient, emergency, perioperative, and other care arenas established a global vision – Achieving Excellence in a Patient-First Environment – and created a framework to guide decision-making, responsibility, and accountability at the point of care.
She led the establishment of the Center for Professional Nursing Practice to promote and advance excellence, developed a strategic plan for transformational leadership, innovative environment, and self-empowerment to achieve best-practice outcomes. She also established the organizational structure to advance toward national certifications.
Weber introduced the Career Advancement Program that encourages and recognizes professional development in the clinical setting, with staff achieving a higher level of certification than the national average.
Other innovations included the introduction of the Nursing Research Council, Nurse Residency Program, and Nurse Preceptor Programs, as well as the adoption of the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses’ Synergy Model for performance evaluation, competency assessment, and educational initiatives.
Weber extended her commitment to professional nursing development by serving on nursing program advisory boards at Reading Area Community College, Kutztown University, and Alvernia University. In addition, she joined with colleagues from higher education and health care to form the Berks Regional Research Alliance to promote nursing research and growth in nursing knowledge for the benefit of patients, community, and nursing professionals.
Weber began her career with The Reading Hospital as Patient Education Coordinator in 1981 and was appointed Nursing Service Director in 1986. She earned a master’s degree in business administration from Alvernia University, a master’s degree in nursing from the University of Pennsylvania’s family nurse practitioner program, and a BSN from Columbia University. She holds certification as Nurse Executive, Advanced, from the American Nurses Credentialing Center.