Life as a Duke nurse is an exciting one. From gathering triage information for a patient en route to a hospital Emergency Department, to checking in on a long-time primary care patient at a clinic, we all share the same commitment to caring for our patients, their loved ones, and each other.



The American Nurses Credentialing Center’s (ANCC) Magnet Recognition Program is the gold standard for recognizing organizations that achieve excellence in quality care outcomes. Less than 8 percent of all hospitals have achieved Magnet designation. The health system designation demonstrates our commitment to achieving clinical excellence through interdisciplinary collaboration, excellence in nursing practice, a supportive work environment, a culture of safety and to recruiting and retaining top nursing talent. Duke University Health System is one of only 16 health systems in the United States to have achieved Magnet status, and one of only three in North Carolina.



We derive our beliefs and values from our Professional Practice Model – a description of the beliefs and values used to consistently demonstrate professional practice within an organization. Through this model, we deliver care to achieve excellent outcomes that are consistent with the nursing values and expectations grounded in caring practices:

  • Integrity
  • Excellence
  • Innovation
  • Collaboration



Shared governance has been a cornerstone for Duke Professional Nursing for many years. Shared governance is shared decision making for professional nursing and organizational leadership related to practice, quality, competence, and knowledge management. The Duke Nursing Shared Governance model is composed of Clinical Practice; Professional Development; & Quality & Safety:

  • Duke Nursing Clinical Practice is composed of the entity practice councils, specialty councils, such as Oncology, Pediatrics, Critical Care Standards, and Vascular Access Council, to name a few, as well as Research and Evidence Based Practice.
  • Professional Development Council oversees the education for nurses new to the organization, as well is responsible for on-going education and development of every Duke Nurse. The Professional Development Council also oversees the Duke Clinical Ladder and Patient & Family Education.
  • Duke Nursing Quality & Safety is responsible for the review of data and provides input into nurse sensitive indicator goals. Duke Nursing Informatics has a collaborative relationship with Duke Nursing Clinical Practice Council and Quality & Safety Council.



Duke University Health System is committed to maintaining its standing as a world-class academic and health care system. Duke is on a trajectory to meet industry and marketplace expectations that 80 percent of its nurses will have attained at least a baccalaureate nursing degree by the year 2020. This goal is in alignment with recommendations originally made by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Institute of Medicine in the October 2010 landmark report “The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health.”

The majority of all Duke University Health System nurses hold a baccalaureate, or higher, nursing degree. Newly hired nursing candidates who do not currently have such a degree are required to provide evidence of enrollment in a baccalaureate program within two years of employment, and to achieve completion of the degree program within five years of the start of their employment.



Most importantly, Duke Nurses are vital members of the communities they serve. Our reasons for becoming a nurse, backgrounds, life perspectives, and future aspirations all vary, but our commitment to nursing excellence in patient-centered settings is the same.

Duke Nursing supports a positive environment that actively promotes equality of opportunity and freedom from discrimination on the basis of age, cultural background, class, disability, ethnicity, gender, religion, or sexual orientation – in both education and employment. We are committed to removing conditions that place staff at a disadvantage, and work to actively combat discrimination.



Duke Health strives to create a workplace as diverse as the patient population we serve. That's why we value the culture and skills of people from all over the world. We encourage nursing candidates from all over the world to see what Duke Nursing has to offer. For more information on how to obtain visas, and the rules and regulations for foreign nurses, please visit the following pages:

Visa Services for Duke Nurses

Visa Services for Allied Health & Other Professionals



The Safe Patient Handling and Mobility (SPHM) Program, “Duke MOVES,” is focused on providing a safe work environment for our staff who perform patient handling activities. Duke MOVES includes a patient mobility assessment each shift that identifies a patient’s mobility needs and lift equipment or devices necessary to safely mobilize a patient. This is essential as findings show that early mobility during hospitalization can lead to a decrease in hospital-related complications like pressure ulcers, falls, and pneumonia.

Duke MOVES is a best practice aligned with new ANA-SPHM guidelines. All Duke clinical areas have a champion who collaborates with the manager to provide equipment or devices, key SPHM principle training and ensures Duke MOVES is active. Quarterly champion meetings provide development experiences and an opportunity to participate in system-wide decision-making.

Available lift equipment and transfer devices at DUHS include: Steady, Encore/SARA Plus, Opera/Maxi Move, Maxi Sky, Care Lift, HoverMatt, Hover Jack, and Blue Plastic Liners.

In the last 2 years patient related injuries have reduced by 43%-55% across all three hospitals. To learn more about Duke Moves MOVES, please click here.


The Duke Patient Safety Center works to develop and support quality and safety related roles, committees, training, tools, research, strategies, data and other resources through our interdisciplinary team. We strive to balance the clinical, administrative, psychological, spiritual, and service needs of our organization, our frontline workers and the patients that we serve.

Before we care about quality, we have to care about our work, and before we can care about our work, we have to take better care of ourselves. Where are the role models for resilience and self-care? The growing consensus in the peer reviewed literature is that burnout levels in healthcare workers are reaching the breaking point. Against the backdrop of healthcare reform and economic uncertainty, our resilience is even further compromised. But for many individuals and work units, there needs to be a focus on the caregivers, and their needs, to build resilience and bounce back from burnout, before providing the training and the tools to improve quality in a sustainable way. To learn more about activities sponsored by the Duke Patient Safety Center, visit