Job Search

Job Search

Whether you’re looking for your first nursing job or deciding to make a move after years in the same place, tips about job searches, resume writing, and interviewing techniques will only help. Take the time read more and find out how to use current technology to improve your prospects

  • Don’t Let Your Busy Schedule Get in the Way of Your BSN

    A Higher Degree of Education! Aspen University has always been an online University- effectively leading the way in online education. By reaching the learner in his or her real world, and real work environment, distance learning programs enhance the way individuals learn best: through experience, reflection, implementation and experiment. By stepping out of the known… Read more…

  • RN-to-BSN Program Goals

    aspen woman rn bsnAspen University offers an online RN to BSN degree program for registered nurses who have an associate degree or diploma in nursing and wish to pursue a baccalaureate degree. With a liberal arts foundation, our RN-to-BSN program builds on initial nursing preparation to prepare nurses for a broader scope of practice with a useful understanding… Read more…

  • CCNE Accredited BSN Degree at Only $250 per Month!

    Keep Calm and Get Your BSNAspen University is dedicated to offering any motivated college-worthy student the opportunity to receive a high quality, responsibly priced distance-learning education for the purpose of achieving sustainable economic and social benefits for themselves and their families. The mission of the Aspen University School of Nursing is to enhance the health and quality of life for… Read more…

  • The rewards of nursing in an ambulatory surgery center

    perioperative nursing surgery centerThe secret is finding balance and working collaboratively. By Timothy P. Luckett, CRNFA The perioperative nurse who leaves the hospital to take a position in an Ambulatory Surgery Center (ASC) must be prepared for a bit of a bumpy ride as he or she faces new tasks and responsibilities. The good news is that the… Read more…

  • Earn a CCNE Accredited BSN Degree Online

    CCNE Accredited BSN DegreeTuition under $10,000. Pay only $250 per month. 10 courses. 18 months. 100% Online. RN to BSN Tuition Plan: Our goal is for our students to earn a high quality degree that will help them improve their career and income, without taking on large financial debt. There are two ways that we help our students achieve… Read more…

  • Interprofessional education

    Combining skills and knowledge from different disciplines enhances patient care. By Joanne Disch, PhD, RN, FAAN   In 2003, the Committee on Health Professions Education of the Institute of Medicine released a report recommending that “All health professionals should be educated to deliver patient-centered care as members of an interdisciplinary team, emphasizing evidence-based practice, quality… Read more…

  • Can nursing meet the 80/2020 goal?

    edu bsn cap degreeProgress is slow but steady as RNs head back to school to get their BSN. By Janet Boivin, BSN, RN Will 80% of RNs hold a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) degree by the year 2020? Not likely, say nursing experts. But not to worry, they add. For the first time in the decades-old… Read more…

  • Ready to change specialties?

    edu change specialtiesMake sure you know yourself and what you really want.   By Janet Boivin, BSN, RN Deciding to change your nursing specialty can require as much self-assessment and research as transitioning into an entirely new career. Or it can be as simple as moving to a hospital unit that requires similar nursing skills but has… Read more…

  • Returning to nursing school? Keys to success

    edu nursing school success back school colored pencilPreparation will help ease the transition. By Teresa Shellenbarger, PhD, RN, CNE, ANEF, and Meigan Robb, PhD, RN   Congratulations! You have decided to pursue additional nursing education and been accepted at the program of your choice. You’re happy—right? But you also may be feeling a bit anxious, especially if you haven’t been in school… Read more…

  • Is an accelerated nursing program right for you?

    edu accelerated nurse programThis challenging approach to nursing education offers plenty of rewards. By Janet Boivin, BSN, RN Even with a 3.8 GPA from the University of Florida, Katrina Sherman, a junior majoring in English, harbored doubts that she could find a well-paying job when she graduated. So she began considering nursing as an option. After graduating with a… Read more…

  • Moving ahead with your nursing education

    educating nurse staff patientsTake advantage of the resources available to you. By Deborah E. Trautman, PhD, RN, FAAN Whether you’re a newly licensed nurse or a seasoned professional, the time is always right to take the next step in your education. Returning to school opens new doors of opportunity for your career, as higher levels of education allow… Read more…

  • Fighting the effects of nurse fatigue

    Have you ever gotten home from a shift and forgotten the journey from the hospital to your house? Are you ever irritable and cranky, but can’t figure out why? Almost all of us have encountered these situations, often the effects of nurse fatigue, during our nursing careers. What is nurse fatigue? Nurse fatigue is described as… Read more…

  • Promoting staff engagement

    Jaime is a nurse manager in a busy emergency department. He’s been in the role for 1 year and was beginning to gain confidence in his leadership abilities. Last week, he received the results of the Gallup Q12® Employee Engagement Survey, which his staff had recently been asked to complete online. He was surprised to learn… Read more…

  • Goals and actions for a healthy lifestyle

    Hitting a milestone of 50 years or older can spark renewed attention to personal health goals, along with the recognition that there’s much more to a healthy lifestyle than diet and exercise. What is (or is not) consumed, along with activity (or lack thereof) and how we practice a peaceful existence form the connections to… Read more…

  • Promoting professionalism by sharing a cup of coffee

    This is the second in a series of articles on promoting professionalism. You can read the first article Nurses’ essential role in supporting professionalism. Consider this scencario: After a particularly busy shift in the intensive care unit (ICU), the assignment board indicates that your colleague Mary is taking your patient assignment at shift change. As… Read more…

  • ANA Enterprise News

    ANA recognized for role in reducing patient harm Six years ago, ANA joined the Partnership for Patients, a coalition of hospitals, providers, patient advocates, employers, and state and federal officials formed by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and dedicated to creating a safer, higher quality healthcare system. The partnership’s primary goal of… Read more…

  • Translating quality into practice

    More than 1,100 nurses and other professionals gathered at ANA’s 2017 Conference in Tampa, Florida, March 8-10, to learn about the latest research, strategies, and best practices for improving safety, quality, and staffing in their healthcare facilities. “Nursing work environment, staffing, nurse health, patient and nurse satisfaction—all affect outcomes,” said ANA President Pamela F. Cipriano,… Read more…

  • Get creative about nursing

    Key takeaways The media—television, radio, the Internet, books, and more—often depict nurses unprofessionally. When nurses create the media, they can ensure professional depictions that ensure the public understands the important role nurses play in health care.   Nurses pop up in all sorts of contexts within media. From television, radio, and film to websites and newspaper… Read more…

  • Nurses’ essential role in supporting professionalism

    Key takeaways - Most nurses behave professionally and ethically. - A tiered approach to intervention when unprofessional behavior occurs offers the opportunity for self-directed, nonpunitive change that prevents a pattern of behavior. - Proper intervention training helps to build and maintain a culture of professionalism. What does it mean to be a professional? Providing care of the… Read more…

  • Karen Bankston: A leader who listens

    ANA’S Mary Mahoney Award honors significant contributions to advancing equal opportunities in nursing for members of minority groups. Karen Bankston, PhD, MSN, FACHE, has devoted much of her career to this endeavor. In her role as associate dean for clinical practice, partnership, and community engagement in the college of nursing at the University of Cincinnati (UC), Bankston… Read more…

  • Becoming a wound and ostomy nurse

    People sometimes ask how I can tolerate my work, but I love being a wound and ostomy nurse. I’ll admit that, when performing an assessment, I don’t always love looking at infected wounds and other unsightly skin conditions. But I love the ingenuity and independence of my practice. More things I love about wound and ostomy… Read more…

  • Look inward and lead

    At first, Faith’s excited to be selected as director of critical care, but after spending time with her fellow directors she has second thoughts. She’s not as outgoing as most other nursing leaders. For example, rather than join colleagues for lunch in the cafeteria, she often retreats to her office to reflect and reenergize. She… Read more…

  • A Look At Hospital Nursing During the 1970’s

    You would feel lost and confused if you were transported back in time to a hospital ward in the 1970’s when the nurses who are now at the end of their careers were students. But you would probably not be as out of your depth as a nurse from that era who suddenly found herself… Read more…

  • Education Listings: American Nurse Today Education Guide for 2017

    Nursing careers and educationAntioch University Graduate School of Leadership and Change (GSLC) Dayton, OH Our program focuses on understanding, re- searching and leading change in organiza- tions, workplaces, and the professions in- volved in the healthcare field. Students in the healthcare concentration of the PhD in Leadership and Change program bring the lens of leadership and change to… Read more…

  • Landing your dream job

    nursing dream jobA stand-out résumé, focused job search, and excellent interview skills can lead you to the job of a lifetime. By Debra Siela, PhD, RN, CCNS, ACNS-BC, CCRN-K, CNE, RRT; Renee Twibell, PhD, RN, CNE; and Juanita Brand, EdD, RN, WHNP-BC You’ve just reached a new milestone—your first nursing degree after completing your first nursing education program.… Read more…

  • Career options for Nurse Educators

    career options for nurse educatorsLearn about educators’ roles in both the clinical and academic setting. Teaching nurses is an exciting and challenging career, and the nurse educator role offers a wealth of opportunities. But don’t assume all nurse educators work in the academic setting; some work in the clinical setting. In both settings, knowledge of educational theories and principles underpins… Read more…

  • Seizing opportunities for positive change

    A summer job changed Christopher Otto’s career path—and ultimately his life—igniting a passion for providing care to critically ill cardiac patients and working to prevent heart disease among the healthy. In high school, Otto, BSN, RN, CHFN, PCCN, took drafting classes and wanted to be an architect. Then his mother suggested a part-time job as a… Read more…

  • Better focus in a too-busy world

    Are you doing multiple things? Thumbing through this month’s edition of American Nurse Today while watching television? Listening to a colleague while writing care notes? You may believe doing two things at once is more productive. Some friends and family members believe that multitasking is the sign of special talent and mental strength. Our fast-paced lives seem… Read more…

  • How to fund your nursing education

    How to fund your nursing educationIf you’re looking for ways to fund your nursing education, don’t expect money to arrive on your doorstep. You need to do the hard work of searching for scholarships, grants, government loans, and other potential funding sources. Here are some websites where you can start looking. Johnson and Johnson’s The Campaign for Nursing’s Future discovernursing.com: Visit… Read more…

  • Pathbreaking education options for 21st-century nurses

    american nurses associationNursing programs and funding options are changing to suit new nursing roles and tracks. It’s a good time to be a nurse. Not since Florence Nightingale defined modern nursing by reducing infection during the Crimean War have nurses been so valued— and sought after—for their expand- ing knowledge and skills. “I consider nursing to be… Read more…

  • Lifelong learning: Your catalyst for success

    success catalyst nurse leaderThriving in a contemporary practice setting can hinge on your willingness to continue your education. Today’s professional nurses have a wide variety of choices regarding where to practice and how far to advance in their careers. Healthcare reform has sparked development of new care-delivery models that offer opportunities to practice and lead change in both… Read more…

  • Hair stylist honors tired client, and her shoes, with essay about ‘superhero’ nurses

    Hair stylist Ashley Bolling called it one of those “stop-you-in-your-tracks” moments. Last week one of her clients, a nurse, came in for a lengthy cut-and-color session at Captivate Salon & Spa in Whitesburg, Ky. The nurse had been working all night and hadn’t been home to bed. Yet she stopped on her way to buy… Read more…

  • Making sense of the confusing alphabet soup of credentials

    Imagine this scenario: A state senator, after reviewing a letter from a constituent supporting her bill to remove practice barriers for nurses, asks the nursing organization’s lobbyist, “Is this person a nurse?” These credentials followed the letter-writer’s signature: BSN, MSN, DNP, APRN-BC, CDE, FAANP, FAAN. Even as a nurse, I sometimes have a hard time… Read more…

  • How to Nail Your Next Nursing Job Interview

    Let’s face it. There’s no such thing as “job security” these days. With healthcare constantly shifting and organizations being bought, sold or taken over — you just don’t know if your job is going to be there tomorrow. So even if you’re reading this post and thinking to yourself, “I don’t need this information. I’m… Read more…

  • The facts about your Nursing Career

    Nursing Career FactsNursing is the nation's largest health care profession with more 3.1 - 3.6 million registered nurses practicing nationwide. Despite its large size, many more nurses are needed into the foreseeable future to meet the growing demand for nursing care. As you plan or consider a career as a registered nurse, you should know these facts:… Read more…

  • Choosing your political battles

    Mary*, a new manager in the operating room, prides herself on being a strong advocate for her staff, quickly acting on every issue with which she’s presented. So she’s a little surprised when her leader-mentor Susan tells her that she’s developing a reputation for being overly aggressive. Susan, who explains to Mary that she’s perceived… Read more…

  • PhD or DNP? Defining the path to your career destination

    Have you been toying with the idea of earning a doctoral degree in nursing? Maybe you want to pursue a career in research, teaching, or advanced practice and you know that another degree can help you achieve those goals. You may, however, not know whether you should go for a doctor of philosophy (PhD) in… Read more…

  • Subduing stress: A physiology-based approach

    Stress can influence disease development and exacerbation—but managing it effectively can reduce its effects. To promote our own wellness, we need to develop strategies to reduce the effects of stress and protect against it. How you perceive stress is important. Researchers Richard Lazarus and Susan Folkman proposed that stress is a two-way street involving both… Read more…

  • A conversation with Patricia Flatley Brennan

    Patricia Flatley Brennan, PhD, RN, FAAN, is the director of the National Library of Medicine (NLM), the world’s largest biomedical library and the producer of digital information services used by scientists, health professionals, and members of the public worldwide. She’s the first nurse and the first woman to hold this post. A member of ANA, Brennan was sworn in… Read more…

  • “My research article was accepted for publication!”

    Nursing Career FactsBeth, a former hospital nursing director-turned-faculty member, learns she has to present her research at a national conference and write it up for publication and funding. Like many nursing faculty members and researchers, she enjoys conducting research because the evidence it yields allows her to help more patients. She wants to get the word out… Read more…

  • Moving up millennials to leadership roles

    Christina, a 29-year-old RN, BSN, recently obtained her MSN in clinical management. She has worked 3 years as a staff nurse and wants to move into a leadership position. Some managers, and even some of her colleagues, feel that because of her age, Christina isn’t ready for leadership roles. This scenario describes many millennial nurses… Read more…

  • Nurses with disabilities: Know their rights

    Registered nurses (RNs) with physical disabilities experience discrimination in the workplace. Researchers have found that nurses with disabilities often leave the nursing profession because they feel discriminated against or they fear they will jeopardize patient safety. However, there are no documented incidents of patient injury related specifically to a nurse’s disability. To date, several exploratory… Read more…

  • Duke Integrative Medicine’s Integrative Health Coach Professional Training prepares nurses for rewarding career option

    Becoming an Integrative Health Coach can provide new career opportunities for nurses and other healthcare providers. It also can equip providers in their current roles with the tools to better engage patients in hospital, home healthcare, or ambulatory settings in making the important lifestyle changes that underlie chronic disease. Unhealthy habits are notoriously difficult to… Read more…

  • Tools to improve your collaborative skills

    No matter what your practice environment, you need to collaborate effectively with other nurses and other disciplines to excel in your career. Nurses are expected to participate in joint initiatives that embrace research and evidence-based practice. Through collaborative projects, valuable changes can be made to educational processes, administrative practices, and patient-care protocols. As you’re no doubt aware, role, time, and resource demands can create… Read more…

  • Three first steps for effective succession planning

    In light of the predicted nursing shortage, nursing leaders need to take strategic action to prepare nurses to assume key leadership roles in the near future. Proactive succession planning programs are a key strategy for addressing the impending shortage of nurse leaders. Such planning involves identifying highpotential individuals and formally developing them to assume leadership roles. A primed pipeline of competent nurses prepared to… Read more…

  • A kinder, gentler workplace, part 2: Impatience

    When I was a nursing student making rounds with a surgeon, he decided to remove a patient’s stitches. I hurried to the treatment room for a sterile suture pack and laid it out for him on the tray table. The hemostat didn’t work, so he threw it in my face, cutting me above the right eye. That was 50 years ago,… Read more…

  • American Nurse Today: Education Guide

    ANT education guide booklet magazine nurseEducation is a valuable tool for advancing your nursing career. This special guide explains how to choose the right educational option for you, how to become a nurse educator or an advanced practice nurse, and how to land your dream job after completing your additional education.  

  • The seasons of life, change, and grief

    Just as the seasons of the year change from fall to winter to spring and finally to summer as we journey through life, we experience the seasons of life: wellness, illness, and finally death. The seasons of life will be different for every person, unique to each of us. This article focuses on the incredible… Read more…

  • Evidence-based interview strategy for new nurses

    For many nurses, job interviews induce fear. The competitive job market has made interview preparation more important than ever, especially for new graduate nurses. Competition for new graduate positions can be fierce; some employers get up to 1,000 applicants for a single new graduate opening. At the same time, job interview techniques have transitioned from testing handshakes, gauging eye contact, and observing… Read more…

  • The rewarding career of nursing informatics

    Recently, many of you have experienced or contributed to your organization’s system upgrade or system conversion. Some of you might have received short-term training to serve as a “super user” or a “trainer” and helped your colleagues transition to the new system. Do you have an aptitude for information technology (IT)? Would you like to… Read more…

  • Retirement countdown: Are Baby Boomer Nurses prepared for what lies ahead?

    Baby Boomers (born from 1946 – 1964), eager to step away from the pressures and responsibilities of the workplace and embark on the next chapter of their lives, now retire at a rate of 10,000 per day. Given that most workers heading into retirement lack sufficient income to fund living and healthcare expenses, many Boomers… Read more…

  • Maintaining clinical competency is your responsibility

    Healthcare consumers expect competency from the nurses who care for them—and registered nurses (RNs) have an ethical and legal responsibility to maintain their competency. The scope of the professional nurse evolves continuously to adjust to the dynamic healthcare landscape, society’s changing needs, the political climate, and the expanding knowledge base of theory and scientific domains. Competencies defined The American Nurses Association (ANA) states that “assurance of competence is the responsibility of… Read more…

  • Your path to becoming an administrative supervisor

    Naomi, a novice staff nurse, calls her administrative supervisor, Madelyn, for assistance with Selma Rice, an 84-year-old patient  who has pulled out her I.V. line and wants to leave against medical advice (AMA). When Madelyn arrives on the nursing unit, she shows Naomi how to access the hospital policy and reviews the AMA procedure with her. After discussing Mrs. Rice’s situation, Madelyn and Naomi go to… Read more…

  • Smoothing your transition from RN to NP

    Transitioning to the nurse practitioner (NP) role is exciting—but it can also be stressful. Fortunately, taking certain steps can make it smoother. I’m a family NP (FNP), board certified by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). Before graduation, I worked as a critical care nurse for 5 ½ years. I still vividly recall the struggles I had as a new registered nurse (RN) and later as a… Read more…

  • Boost your career with community outreach involvement

    Does patient teaching energize you? Could you see yourself leading a hula hoop contest to motivate children to exercise? Do you enjoy working with patients and professionals who appreciate your contributions? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then consider getting involved in community outreach activities your employer supports. Community health nurses offer programs to groups outside the hospital walls to make… Read more…

  • Mentoring 101: What you need to know about nurturing new nurses

    “I will be your mentor.” I was fortunate to hear these five words early in my career. As nursing becomes more complex, patients more critical, and students more challenging to teach, mentoring becomes more essential for clinicians and educators. Here are answers to common questions about mentoring and how it works. What is mentoring? According… Read more…

  • What Works: Developing professionalism and leadership in new nurses

    Nursing is a dynamic profession, requiring enhanced professionalism and leadership skills to deal with the increased complexity of the healthcare needs of today and into the future. New nurses are often overwhelmed with transitioning from student roles into the role of professional nurses. They tend to focus on nursing as a job, not a profession.… Read more…

  • Consider a career as a healthcare education simulator

    Simulations give healthcare professionals and students the opportunity to practice complex skills in realistic settings. According to David Gaba, MD, director of the Center for Immersive and Simulation-Based Learning at Stanford University School of Medicine, “Simulation is a technique—not a technology—to replace or amplify real experiences with guided experiences that evoke or replicate substantial aspects of the real world in a fully interactive manner.” Simulation has rapidly become an… Read more…

  • To Q or not to Q: Engaging students in quality and safety in nursing education

    Every nursing student should strive to make a positive difference in health care. Through will, ideas, and execution, QStudent was created as a new component to the Quality and Safety Education for Nurses (QSEN) Institute. (See What is QSEN?) QStudent focuses directly on students—their perspectives on healthcare issues and how they can improve quality and safety for patients. Making a difference At Ursuline College’s Breen School of Nursing,… Read more…

  • Is utilization review the career for you?

    Rising medical costs  and healthcare reform have increased the need for careful review and management of medical resources. The unique and vital role of the utilization review (UR) nurse serves this need. Like many nurses, you may be unfamiliar with the nurse’s role in UR. Although the UR concept isn’t new, the nature of the role and demands on utilization reviewers have… Read more…

  • 2016 American Nurse Today’s Spirit of Caring

    We are pleased to announce that COLLEEN BIDWELL from Los Alamitos Medical Center, who was nominated by Judy Chabot, has received the most votes this year in American Nurse Today's Spirit of Caring recognition program. Colleen is a patient advocate who exemplifies excellence in nursing care through her attentiveness and compassion for her  patients…even as she fought through her own… Read more…

  • Safe patient handling and mobility: The journey continues

    Hazards associated with manual patient handling continue to compromise the health and safety of nurses. Among nurses who responded to the American Nurses Association’s (ANA’s) Health Risk Appraisal: • 42% believe they are at risk at work from lifting or repositioning patients • 13% have had a debilitating musculoskeletal injury • 75% have access to safe patient handling and mobility (SPHM) technology, but only… Read more…

  • How to succeed at floating

    If you’ve ever floated,  you know the experience can be challenging at times. Wherever you work, you may sometimes feel you don’t have enough hours in the day to complete all your tasks, especially when working in clinical situations less familiar to you. To float effectively and efficiently, you need to be skilled, knowledgeable, and competent. You have to stay current with… Read more…

  • Professional competencies can ease your transition to a new specialty

    THE NURSING PROFESSION offers many specialty roles, including both direct patient-care roles (such as emergency, neonatal, and school nurse) and indirect roles (such as nurse manager, case management, and quality improvement). Transitioning from one specialty to another requires an orientation and learning period. Competencies help clarify professional expectations and create a professional development learning plan for your new nursing role. They describe… Read more…

  • Not just “eating our young”: Workplace bullying strikes experienced nurses, too

    Even though nursing is a profession of caring and compassion, bullying exists in many forms in it. Bullying threatens teamwork, morale, communication, and, most important, patient safety. The playground bully from our childhood has grown up to become our nursing colleague who is now bullying in the workplace (See Workplace bullying). It’s easy to understand… Read more…

  • Leading through failure

    I have served as a nurse corps officer in the United States Air Force for 27 years. One of my most useful leadership lessons came from understanding the value of failure. This sounds like a totally crazy idea, but knowing how to fail well and, more importantly, using that failure to fuel future successes is… Read more…

  • Why should we care? Metrics that matter

    MetricsIn my December editorial, I discussed dress codes for nurses and why they matter. In response, several readers asked me if I’d consider writing a series of editorials with the theme “Why it matters to nursing”— “it” referring to any of a wide range of nursing-related topics. This idea seemed like a great way to… Read more…

  • Lessons learned by Magnet® Program Directors

    Lessons learnedOrganizations on the path to obtaining Magnet® designation from the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) appoint a single source of communication and contact—the Magnet Program Director (MPD). For new MPDs, this role can be overwhelming or amazing, depending on the orientation, available mentoring, and outcome of the organization’s journey. In this article, MPDs from the… Read more…

  • Boosting your influence

    influenceJessie was excited to be appointed as chair of the professional practice council in her hospital. She envisioned being able to quickly engage staff in the work of the council. One of the council’s initial goals was to increase the number of staff who submitted professional portfolios to advance on the clinical ladder. Six months… Read more…

  • America needs a culture change

    geriatric geriatrics elderly old mother sonMy name is Chad Allen and I am a psychiatric nurse who works with the geriatric population. As a psychiatric nurse, I have seen the geriatric population suffer many ailments, including dementia, depression, pain, and abandonment from family members. The goal with this letter is to promote cultural change by encouraging families to take a… Read more…

  • Measuring the health risks of 9,000 nurses and counting

    survey questions ANA HRA HIPPAAmerican Nurses Association's (ANA) HealthyNurseTM Health Risk Appraisal (HRA) has been up and running for more than 2 years and is already a useful resource for promoting and maintaining the health and wellness of nurses. Using this confidential and HIPAA-compliant survey, participants identify personal and professional health, safety, and wellness risks; compare their personal results… Read more…

  • Combating change fatigue in today’s healthcare environment

    caring fatigueThose who work in the healthcare industry are well aware of its constantly changing landscape. Healthcare institutions are challenged to balance the provision of safe care with the allocation of essential resources. Changes in healthcare are aimed at increasing the efficiency and safety of care through best practices. Nurses, as the primary caregivers, are charged… Read more…

  • Some thoughts on addiction

    marijuanaBy Donna Greenwood, MSN, RN I recently wrote a posting related to nurses caring for patients with addictions in response to a Facebook posting exchange. Below is the exchange, followed by my response. I wish I could honestly say that I have always been the nurse who has taken the high road, but I can’t.… Read more…

  • Courage in everyday nursing practice

    CourageCourage is an important attribute in life and in your nursing practice. As Helen Keller said, “Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring… Read more…

  • Viewpoint: Putting money at the bedside

    Nurse staffingTeamwork has proven to be effective in creating strategies to improve patient outcomes. The Joint Commission, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS), clinical professionals, healthcare providers, hospital associations, and healthcare consumers proved the positive effect of teamwork by planning and strategizing together to improve healthcare delivery through the creation of core measures—performance measures that help… Read more…

  • The business case for optimizing the nursing workforce

    In this special section, “Preparing the Workforce—Today and Tomorrow,” you’ll find trends, practical strategies, and food for thought. The articles are designed to help nurses in all specialties and at all levels who face myriad workforce challenges, ranging from a growing older population to the impending retirement of many experienced nurses. For my own contribution, I’d… Read more…

  • The second victim experience: Mitigating the harm

    Second victimLike most nurses, you probably consider yourself emotionally strong and resilient, with defenses that help you “get the job done” through­out your busy shift. But if a patient under your watch experiences an unanticipated event (especially involving an error on your part), you may be shaken to the point of being traumatized. The impact of… Read more…

  • Releasing our attachments to the past

    AttachmentsJake, a critical care nursing director, works for a large healthcare system that has invested heavily in testing the use of robots to support operational tasks and provide new ways for physicians to interact with patients. During his monthly staff meeting, Jake presents an overview of the robotic products and what they’re designed to do.… Read more…

  • How to get your article published

    PublishedMany of us have a secret desire to see our ideas in print—to be viewed as a thought leader or a recognized subject matter expert. So what stops us from pursuing that secret desire? It could be fear of rejection, inexperience, writer’s block, lack of organizational support, or time constraints, to name a few. After… Read more…

  • Moving the needle: What the data tell us about academic progression

    BSN and graduate programsAlthough support for academic progression was once considered divisive in some nursing circles, times have changed. The need to advance the educational level of the nursing workforce—a key recommendation in the Institute of Medicine (IOM)’s 2010 report The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health—is now widely embraced by most national nursing organizations and patient… Read more…

  • Keeping nurses healthy, safe, and well

    nurseTo keep patients healthy, safe, and well, registered nurses (RNs) have to be healthy, safe, and well themselves. Yet RNs face health, safety, and wellness risks unique to their profession. This article outlines how RNs and employers can identify, mitigate, and reduce these risks. To provide context and evidence for risks, it also describes key… Read more…

  • Enhance your self-awareness to be an authentic leader

    self-awarenessIn 2013 alone, U.S. organizations spent more than $15 billion on leadership development activities. Although much of these expenses focus on external programming, including face-to-face workshops, webinars, and e-learning, fewer resources target the internal development of leaders. To maximize sustainable leadership development, emphasis must be given to both external programming and individual improvement. Experts in… Read more…

  • Exploring childcare health consultant as a career option

    Child careThe child care health consultant (CCHC) is a specialized role with the primary goal of promoting the safest and healthiest environment for the staff and children in child care settings, including child care centers, nursery schools, and camps. CCHCs guide the child care program in adhering to the local and state regulations, then go above… Read more…

  • Succeeding as a primary care nurse

    primary careIsabelle didn’t say much, but you could easily see the kindness in her eyes. With her husband Jacob by her side, she let me thread the I.V. catheter into her vein so the I.V. fluids could help her symptoms improve. Jacob had called me earlier that morning, concerned for Isabelle. He told me she was… Read more…

  • Leadership insights

    path success board grifols healthcare salmonAs part of its initiative to recognize nurses in board leadership roles, the American Nurses Foundation interviewed Marla Salmon, ScD, RN. Currently, Salmon is a professor of nursing and global public health at the University of Washington. In 2014, she joined the board of Grifols, S.A., after serving on a subsidiary board. Grifols is a… Read more…

  • Announcing ANA’s Nursing: Scope and Standards of Practice, Third Edition

    Nursing ScopeWe invite all registered nurses (RNs) to embrace ANA’s Nursing: Scope and Standards of Practice, Third Edition, describing professionalism, safety, and quality care. As the premier organization for RNs, ANA brings nurses together to advance their careers and the profession through standard setting, advocacy, and professional development. In keeping with this role, ANA develops and… Read more…

  • Our Readers Respond – Supporting the next generation of nurse leaders: Graduate Nursing Student Academy

    graduate nursing student academy nurseNurses are increasingly furthering their education with graduate degrees in research and clinical practice. From 2012 to 2013 alone, there have been momentous increases in enrollment in DNP, MSN, and PhD programs across the U.S.: 27.4%, 6.7%, and 1.3%, respectively. This trend reflects a national push to increase the number of master’s- and doctorally-prepared nurses… Read more…

  • Day in the Life: Live tweets as a professional tool

    TweetNurses around the world can connect and communicate with each other in more ways than ever before by using social media. Social media is well suited for nursing use because it is a tool for disseminating evidence-based information to colleagues and the general public, and for advocating for the profession. Of course, caution is needed.… Read more…

  • Close encounters at the bedside: Partnering among clinical nurses, students, and faculty

    nursing dream job“Oh, no, I have a student today!” “You don’t want a student? I’ll take her!” “You want my student? Don’t you just cringe when the students ask you all those questions, and they move so slowly? I can’t get my work done!” “I used to feel like that, but not so much anymore. Now I… Read more…

  • Headlines from the Hill

    erin murphy politics politician health services finance interviewMinnesota Deputy House Minority Leader Erin Murphy, MA, BSN, RN, is an example of how nurses’ talent and skills can translate to accomplishments in the political arena. First elected in 2006 and now in her fifth term, Murphy’s current committee assignments include Health & Human Services Finance and Legacy Fund Finance. She earned a bachelor… Read more…

  • Your path to becoming a nurse educator

    nurse educatorLooking for new professional challenges? Consider teaching nursing. This country has a growing need for academic nurse educators—nurses who teach students enrolled in formal academic nursing courses. The National League for Nursing defines academic nurse educator as a “specialty area and advanced practice role within professional nursing.” In this article, we use the terms nurse… Read more…

  • How to get off the anger-go-round

    One of the most complex emotions, anger is a normal response to certain situational triggers. It’s associated with physiologic changes, including increases in heart rate, blood pressure, and adrenaline level. How we express anger—and how frequently and intensely it erupts—can be either beneficial or detrimental to yourself, those around you, and the larger community. Some… Read more…

  • What nurses owe one another

    With all the concern about ethics today, little attention is paid to the way healthcare professionals treat one another. Nonetheless, the ethics of a profession delimit the role and scope of its activities and prescribe the nature of the relationship that should exist between its members and the lay public. A profession’s ethics also should… Read more…

  • The wide world of travel nursing: Islands, cruise ships, and foreign countries

    In my earlier article on travel nursing (“Travel nursing, anyone?”, November 2014), I described some of the traits and qualifications travel nurses should possess. In this article, we’ll look at nontraditional travel nursing assignments. For my first travel assignment, I told my recruiter, “I’m sure you’ve never heard this before, but I want to go… Read more…

  • How to avoid biased thinking

    Jessica, a Millennial (Generation Y) nurse working on a medical-surgical unit, recently completed her first year of practice. Ralph, her manager, is pleased with her transition and believes she’s making good progress toward becoming a competent nurse. During her first evaluation, Jessica tells Ralph she has mastered the role of being a med-surg nurse. She… Read more…

  • Leadership insights

    interview leadership cno chief nurseThe chief nursing officer (CNO) of a hospital or other healthcare organization has extensive responsibilities, ranging from patient care at the bedside to key strategic business discussions in the boardroom. Balancing the multiple priorities of patient care, work environment, staffing, recruitment and retention, teamwork, training, leadership, nursing quality, and financial management is no easy task.… Read more…

  • Nursing ethics for the 21st century

    nurse ethics anaIn August 2014, ANA participated as a strategic partner with 50 nursing leaders who came together in Baltimore for a summit meeting on Nursing Ethics for the 21st Century. The group set for themselves an ambitious agenda that could culminate in changing the nation’s health care culture so that it more strongly supports basic ethics… Read more…

  • Fostering soft skills is a must for nurse leaders

    It’s uncommon for nurse leaders to have to coach employees on clinical skills, but quite common for nurse leaders to coach and even use disciplinary action for employees who have problems with communication, teamwork, decision making, and critical thinking skills, all of which are considered soft skills — essential components of emotional intelligence (EI). Nurse… Read more…

  • Back to school: Tips on advancing your nursing education

    nursing educationAs professional opportunities for registered nurses (RN) expand, so do expectations about nursing education. Employers today are seeking nurses who can translate the latest scientific evidence into practice, provide culturally sensitive care, and demonstrate good outcomes. And with interprofessional practice taking hold in many settings, employers also want nurses who can lead and contribute to… Read more…

  • Using your GIFTS to protect your nursing license

    My new client, Karen, sits across from me, looking scared. She cries as she tells me the state nursing board has received a complaint about her and she has been fired. I can tell she’s a compassionate nurse who does a great job and doesn’t understand why this is happening to her. Like most of… Read more…

  • How to succeed as a home care nurse

    Sarah, age 4, is on a mechanical ventilator after surviving a near-drowning episode. Her parents, still grieving over her accident, also have a new baby girl. A nurse is providing ventilator care for Sarah in the home. Mr. Palm, age 96, a widower, is referred for home care after a hospital stay because of a… Read more…

  • Why quitting is hard

    Kate Sheldon is the director of acute care services in a medical center that’s part of a larger system. She recently completed her doctorate and is ready to move into a chief nursing officer (CNO) role. Widely respected by her colleagues, she has received encouragement to pursue this goal. Recently, two CNO positions were posted… Read more…

  • A 5-step plan for expanding your network with Facebook

    Even if you are one of the millions of people who use Facebook to connect to others, you may not realize how friending colleagues on Facebook can expand your professional network. There are nurses, just a click away, who can answer your questions and mentor you from afar. In my transition from staff nurse to… Read more…

  • From our readers: How a ‘45-year-old STEMI’ showed me the human side of nursing

    I worked as an emergency medical technician-paramedic for almost 8 years in a rural area before I became a registered nurse. Just before I completed nursing school, a new hospital began offering emergency cardiac catheterization services 60 miles south of the response area where I worked. As a result, our ambulance service implemented a program… Read more…

  • The painful problem of drug diversion and what you can do

    addiction drug diversion nurse abuse substanceControlled substance (CS) abuse and addiction is debilitating for those who suffer from it and devastating to those with whom they interact. Yet, some healthcare professionals, including nurses, become involved with drug diversion of controlled substances in their workplace. In 2011, Thomas and Siela reported that approximately one in ten nurses “may be impaired or… Read more…

  • Viewpoint: Nurse’s refusal to force feed Gitmo prisoners triggers debate

    Few Americans know that a U.S. Navy nurse may lose his 18-year career because he decided he could no longer in good conscience continue force-feeding hunger striking detainees at Guantanamo Bay detention camp this past summer. Lawyers for the nurse say his decision was guided by the ethical and moral principles of the nursing profession… Read more…

  • Connecting leadership at the bedside to improvement

    Now more than ever, the U.S. healthcare industry realizes that public scrutiny, payer analysis, and heightened government oversight are shining a laser-beam focus on patient outcomes that result from clinical quality and patient safety activities. Payer mandates make headlines when they announce payers will no longer reimburse hospitals or doctors for “never events”—medical errors that… Read more…

  • Issues up close

    questions magnify glass aprn crna cnm cnp cnsAdvanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) are increasing in number and in value to the healthcare delivery system. As more people have access to health care, expanded opportunities for APRNs bring up questions about scope of practice. “Should I do this?” is the question we hear most often from APRNs. For two categories of APRNs—certified registered… Read more…

  • Leadership insights

    leadership insight compass questions answers interviewAs part of its initiative to recognize nurses in board leadership roles, the American Nurses Foundation interviewed Angela Barron McBride, PhD, RN, FAAN, FNAP, an Indiana State Nurses Association member. McBride is Distinguished Professor and University Dean Emerita at the Indiana University School of Nursing. She serves on the board of Indiana University Health (IUH)… Read more…

  • Travel nursing, anyone?

    If you’ve been working as a nurse for more than a minute, chances are you’ve heard the term travel nurse or worked with one. But while you may be aware of travel nursing, you may be uncertain about the pay, lifestyle, and how to go about becoming a travel nurse. This article looks at the… Read more…

  • The rewarding role of clinical documentation specialist

    Many organizations now have clinical documentation improvement programs (CDIs) designed to help an organization accurately reflect the quality of patient care, illustrate healthcare services, and make precise reports of diagnosis and procedures. A clinical documentation specialist (CDS) can play a key role in the success of these programs, yet many nurses are unfamiliar with this… Read more…

  • Launching a new season: Fall, football, and a focus on being the best

    This issue of American Nurse Today marks the start of my new role as Editor-in-Chief, following Pam Cipriano’s long, successful tenure. Her shoes will be hard to fill, just as her commitment to giving nurses an influential voice through this journal will be hard to match. Serving as Editor-in-Chief is an honor and a privilege—one of the… Read more…

  • Documentation: You’ve got a lot to lose

    According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, fraud is “the intentional deception or misrepresentation made by a person with the knowledge that the deception could result in some unauthorized benefit to himself or some other person.” Misstatements or omissions found by auditors are not necessarily fraud. In fact, they’re usually errors. Errors aren’t… Read more…

  • Safe patient handling and mobility: A call to action

    To avoid injuring their patients and themselves, healthcare providers must get in the habit of using safe patient handling and mobility (SPHM) technology. In this supplement, national experts share their perspectives and best practices on topics ranging from dealing with bariatric patients, managing slings, and assessing a patient’s mobility to transforming the culture, building the… Read more…

  • Using simulation-enhanced education and nurse-to-nurse mentoring

    Every day, on every shift, rural nurses experience geographic and professional isolation. Confined by geography, staff in rural hospitals practice as generalists by necessity, seeing illness and injury in patients across the lifespan. Challenged by lack of equipment, poor access to consistent continuing education and training, and lack of clinical resource mentors, they rarely have… Read more…

  • Headlines from Hill

    us capitol hill building nurse candidate congressmanOver the past year, the American Nurses Association (ANA) has reviewed political races across the country and met with candidates for Congress who seek ANA’s Political Action Committee (ANA-PAC) endorsement to bolster their campaigns as midterm elections approach. All political candidates must go through a rigorous process to see whether their positions and voting record… Read more…

  • From your ANA President

    pamela cipriano president anaThis month, we celebrate the 50th anniversary of a group of federal programs that have helped shape the face of nursing and health care. In 1964, U.S. lawmakers recognized the importance of nursing care—and of having sufficient nurses to meet our nation’s ongoing needs—by creating Title VIII, or Nursing Workforce Development, programs. Investing in the… Read more…

  • Arrivederci, Dr. Cipriano

    thank you best luck future cipriano osborneAll of us at HealthCom Media are extremely fortunate to have worked closely with American Nurse Today's founding Editor-in-Chief Pam Cipriano. Over the last 8 years, Pam has helped mold American Nurse Today into the award-winning, trusted, and leading journal in the general nursing market that it is today. We will miss our frequent interactions… Read more…

  • Nursing the dead: Medicolegal death scene investigation

    The dead do tell tales. Read more…

  • Writing for good health

    If you asked nurses how they reduce job stress, you probably wouldn’t expect them to reply, “By writing.” In fact, a recent research study of nurses’ preferences for stress-relieving activities didn’t include writing as an option. Few people would choose writing to relax. At the beginning of a writing workshop with nurses, I often ask,… Read more…

  • What you can learn from failure

    Find out why your failures can serve as excellent teachers. Read more…

  • From the ANA CEO

    transformation sign change karen daley pamela cipriano marla westonLooking at enterprise-wide transformation and recognizing a nurse leader Read more…

  • Leadership insights

    personal brand brandingDeveloping your personal brand Read more…

  • Health, safety, & wellness

    resilience nurse trauma comebackNurse resiliency: We’ve got this under control! Read more…

  • An ending and a new beginning for American Nurse Today

    A look back, a look ahead, a graceful exit Read more…

  • The joys of travel nursing

    Have questions about travel nursing? Our expert has answers. Read more…

  • Advocacy: A modest proposal

    Nurses are with patients during some of the most important moments in their lives. Read more…

  • Celebrating nurse leaders in government

    celebrate nurses week governmentEvery May, as we celebrate National Nurses Week, Congress issues a resolution that recognizes the vital role nurses play in the delivery of health care in our country. What many people may not know is that we also have a number of nurse leaders proudly serving as members of Congress and in the administration. In… Read more…

  • Celebrating our profession and looking to the future

    karen daley ana nnw nurses week nationalLike the start of a new year, I tend to think of National Nurses Week (NNW) as a marker—a time to look back at all we’ve accomplished, to celebrate the here and now, and to consider what opportunities lie ahead for ourselves and our profession. For me, this NNW is one of endings and new… Read more…

  • Taking steps in the hospital to prevent diabetes-related readmissions

    Preventing readmissions is an important quality focus. Here is how you can work with other team members to help reduce readmissions for patients who have diabetes. Read more…

  • How Magnet® designation affects nurse retention: An evidence-based research project

    A positive work environment and nurse satisfaction can improve nurse retention. Read more…

  • Improve your career with the Plan-Do-Study-Act cycle

    Using this method can help your goal become a reality and allow you to achieve your potential. Read more…

  • Ten tips to help you reboot your nursing career

    It may be time to refresh your nursing career to the latest “version.” Read more…

  • Leadership insights

    leader leadership elephant ana nurseThe American Nurses Association (ANA) Leadership Institute is designed to enhance leadership knowledge and professional skills to prepare nurses for career advancement. At ANA, we believe enhancing leadership acumen in the nursing profession will reap benefits to society and contribute significantly to improving health outcomes for patients. To find out how ANA’s Leadership Institute is… Read more…

  • Confronting conflict with higher-ups

    Conflict in the workplace is a fact of life, and dealing with it is never easy. Sometimes it seems easier to ignore it and hope it will take care of itself. But in healthcare organizations, that’s not a good strategy. Unresolved conflict almost always leads to poor communications, avoidance behavior, and poor working relationships—which can… Read more…

  • Advancing toward an 80% BSN workforce by 2020

    Learn about the steps one Connecticut hospital is taking to increase its BSN nurses. Read more…

  • Leading at the bedside and beyond

    A typical definition for a leader is one who has the ability to influence. Florence Nightingale, Abraham Lincoln, and Martin Luther King readily come to mind for their ability to inspire others and create forces to change the world. A history of the nursing profession reveals countless nurses who have made significant contributions to patient… Read more…

  • Amazing apps: Space-age tools for clinicians

    Health apps hold the promise of greater access to medical services, better monitoring of chronic conditions, and improved patient outcomes.
    Read more…

  • From our readers: What it means to be a nurse

    A nurse shares her meaning of nursing. Read more…

  • From our readers: My first code—A retrospective report of a premature promotion and a crisis situation

    The elevator’s walls were covered in bronze and silver raised metal squares that gave the appearance of a magic eye puzzle and smelled of the stainless steel cleaner that was probably wiped on that morning. I remember thinking that if you spun around in here too fast the vertigo would be unimaginable. Fumes from the… Read more…

  • How nurses drive rapid electronic records implementation

    Nurses in one large healthcare system are involved at all levels of EHR implementation Read more…

  • Promoting health-behavior changes in patients

    Using the transtheoretical model helps you gauge your patient’s readiness to change. Read more…

  • Introverts can be nurse leaders, too

    Natalie Sanchez recently was promoted to a nurse manager position. So far, she thinks, things are going well. She is starting to feel comfortable with her new role and establishing relationships with her staff. So she’s surprised when her director asks to meet with her and tells her she’s not being social enough. She advises… Read more…

  • Magnet® Nurses In Action: Clinical stars lead a successful professional practice program

    The UEXCEL program has improved patient outcomes while developing nurse leadership and autonomy.

    Read more…

  • Nursing’s memes: Ideas that mold the profession

    We need to pay attention to the memes that are catching and spreading within our profession.

    Read more…

  • Making professional connections

    Improving your networking skills can help you climb the career ladder.

    Read more…

  • From our readers: Resolving the forces of bias and duty in caring for incarcerated patients

    In the nurses’ station of the 39-bed med-surg unit I double-checked my patient’s 2:00 PM medications against the pharmacy sheet and then started down the hall to his room. Roger (not his real name) was from the local prison. A man of about 36, he was recovering without complications from a cholecystectomy. His surgeon had… Read more…

  • What Works: Improving influenza vaccination compliance in an academic medical center

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that all healthcare workers receive the influenza vaccine. Here is how one medical center is working to meet that goal.

    Read more…

  • Stranger in a strange land

    These nurse educators describe the transformative learning that occurred when they taught in another country. Read more…

  • Pump up your PowerPoint® presentations

    Effective use of visual aids promotes audience engagement. Read more…

  • Tired of caring? You may have compassion fatigue

    Do you have trouble remembering what drew you to nursing? Do you take alternative paths through the unit to avoid running into a patient’s family members? Do your colleagues get on your last nerve? Are you ashamed of how you’ve started to feel about your patients, coworkers, family—and the world?Discontentment is a normal part of… Read more…

  • From your ANA President

    work environment steady good better karen daley nurse anaRegistered nurses spend a great deal of their time working. A full-time nurse may spend in the neighborhood of 59,000 hours on the job, if not more, in the span of a 30-year career. It’s clear that having a healthy work environment with safe workplace practices and conditions is vital to nurses’ overall health, wellness,… Read more…

  • How to meet the challenge of disruptive patients

    Disruptive patients can be challenging for even the most experienced nurse. Learn how identify those at high risk for disruptive behavior and strategies for defusing a person who is being disruptive. Read more…

  • Implementing safe patient handling and mobility: Overcoming myths

    patient mobility care handling safeEvery day, nurses and other healthcare workers suffer debilitating and often career-ending musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) and other injuries related to manual patient handling. According to ANA’s 2011 Health and Safety Survey: 62% of nurses reported “developing a disabling musculoskeletal disorder” as a top health and safety concern. 56% of nurses said they have experienced musculoskeletal… Read more…

  • So you want to get a doctorate. . .

    This article helps you make crucial decisions on your path to the ultimate educational degree.
    Read more…

  • Imposter syndrome: When you feel like you’re faking it

    Colleen Jackson recently was promoted to a clinical manager position on her unit. At first, she was thrilled with the opportunity to advance her leadership skills, but now she's having second thoughts. She doesn't feel confident in her new role and worries how her team views her. She confesses to her manager,  "I keep thinking… Read more…

  • How to avoid the pitfalls of social media

    You may face serious consequences if you use social media and other new technologies inappropriately. Read more…

  • Issues up close Managing yourself

    self manage management brainLearn to manage yourself before you try to lead anyone else. This was an important insight that 120 nurse managers in South Florida shared during interviews with our research team about leadership skills. While it has always been important for nurses to be knowledgeable about their work, self-management in leadership and practice is now considered… Read more…

  • From our readers: On being an oncology nurse, or humble pie by the slice

    oncologist_oncology_cancer_nurseI came to oncology nursing in 1984 through what I perceived as bad luck; my goal was to get out of the field ASAP. A new RN, I was completing orientation on a medical-surgical floor when the hospital decided to renovate it into a respiratory unit and our staff would be spread throughout the 400-bed… Read more…

  • From our readers: How mentorship affects retention rates of new nurses

    mentor retention nurseYou likely vividly remember the day you learned you were officially a licensed professional registered nurse. You were excited to be able to apply all the knowledge and skills learned in nursing school into a "real world" clinical setting. You may have faced feelings of uncertainty when you took your first nursing position. As a… Read more…

  • Deep-brain stimulation: Hope for dystonia patients

    Deep-brain stimulation can make a significant difference in the lives of patients with dystonia. Read more…

  • A geriatric family-centered care model for hospitalized elders

    This innovative model has helped reduce falls and pressure ulcers, and RN turnover rates have dropped as well. Read more…

  • Building a sense of community on nursing units

    Jeff Rawson, a new nurse graduate, works on a behavioral health unit. His manager believes his transition is going well—until Jeff asks to transfer to another unit. When she talks with him about it, he says he doesn’t feel a sense of belonging on the unit and has had difficulty establishing close relationships with coworkers.… Read more…

  • Issues up close

    give take bright future challengesAs the health economist for the American Nurses Association (ANA), I’ve been asked, "What will 2013 bring for RNs? Maybe even beyond 2013?" Factors driving future demand The beyond is the easy part: the future looks bright. There are many different factors that will increase the demand for RNs and advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs).… Read more…

  • Health, safety, & wellness

    compassion fatigue nurse nci lombardoNursing is a rewarding profession based on caring, giving, helping, and educating. It involves caring for others, from beautiful newborns to pain-wracked hospice patients. It involves giving of emotion, strength, and energy. It means helping the helpless, the hopeless, and the unwilling. It means educating yourself, coworkers, patients, and the public. Nursing is inspirational and… Read more…

  • From our readers…Value all your skills

    value skills nurse career job transitionAnyone who’s been a nurse for more than 10 years will agree with me: you can make big leaps from specialty to specialty and sometimes leave a skill behind that will rarely have a practical application in your current job. Pediatrics to adult surgery, ostomy nurse to IV team, I could name a few more.… Read more…

  • Quiz Time

    quiz question multiple choice thinkWhich of the following are not sources of standards of care? a. Institutional policies and procedures. b. State nurse practice act c. Published standards for specialties d. Online nursing blogs Correct answer: d. Sources of standards of care include Institutional policies, procedures, and protocols; state nurse practice act; published standards for specialties; guidelines from healthcare… Read more…

  • Readers Respond

    clinical research careerConsider a career in clinical research Thank you so much for the Ness, et al. article “Consider a career in clinical research” in the November 2012 issue of American Nurse Today. I have worked in clinical research for over 10 years in various positions, and this is the first article that I have seen that… Read more…

  • How one hospital helps staff nurses pay for advanced academic degrees

    An innovative funding program is helping to create a highly educated nursing workforce. Read more…

  • Find the best route to your career destination

    To move your career up a notch, should you go back to school or pursue nonacademic options? The authors’ advice can help you decide on the best professional development route. Read more…

  • Too young to be a nurse leader?

    Marla Johnson began her career on an oncology unit after graduating from a BSN program 4 years ago. She achieved certification and regularly takes charge on the night shift. She recently started a master’s program in nursing administration. Marla is age 27 on a unit where the average age is 49. She’s a bright, shining… Read more…

  • Charge Nurse University: Preparing future nurse leaders

    A leadership development program helps staff nurses with high leadership potential become the hospital’s next nurse leaders. Read more…

  • The healthy nurse

    Only you can write your personal well-being prescription to feel good and maintain balance.
    Read more…

  • U.S. News names registered nurse one of best jobs for 2013

    top job best career rank secondU.S. News 100 Best Jobs of 2013 puts registered nurse in the number two spot, right after dentist. The report lists the median salary as $65,690 and states, “The nursing profession will almost always have great hiring opportunity because of its expanse (from pediatric care to geriatric care, and everything in between).” Read more.

  • Talent-management strategies: Bridging the multigenerational gap in nursing

    multigenerational gap overcome blend managementIn today’s dynamic nursing environment, we are seeing four generations, creating a remarkable "cross-pollination" of RNs from across the Traditionalist (Veteran), Baby Boomer, Generation X ("Gen X"), and Generation Y ("Millennial") generations. Each generation brings unique experiences, skills, and worldviews to core workplace issues such as work ethic, perception of authority, leadership, and working relationships.… Read more…

  • Grace under fire: Surviving and thriving in nursing by cultivating resilience

    Resilience can be an asset to you in your career. Read more…

  • National Magnet Nurse of the Year™ 2012 award winners

    national magnet nurse of the year nancy tomczak linda ronbinson melanie simpson kathy sheehy joanna emmonsThe National Magnet Nurse of the Year™ awards from the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) recognize the outstanding contributions of clinical nurses in each of the five Magnet" Model components—transformational leadership; structural empowerment; exemplary professional practice; new knowledge, innovations, and improvements; and empirical outcomes. The 2012 award winners were recognized at ANCC’s National Magnet Conference"… Read more…

  • Consider a career in clinical research

    Nurses are taking on a range of unique and challenging roles
    in the clinical research field. Read more…

  • Taking the first steps to serving on a board

    Nurses have a singular perspective on patient care and community health. With our training and experience, we can inform and improve healthcare decisions in ways that complement those of other professionals but are uniquely our own. As a nurse, there are many ways you can be a leader—in your job, in your community, and in… Read more…

  • From Your ANA President and ANF Chair

    ’Tis the season to change lives Read more…

  • Issues up close

    geonomic science genome health careGenomic science has crossed the horizon of health care into our everyday lives, transforming our understanding of health and illness. The era of personalized genomic health care has arrived. Genomic discoveries have made possible enhanced clinical capabilities to predict susceptibility to common diseases, including cancer, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. Hundreds of genetic tests are available,… Read more…

  • How to handle disruptive physician behaviors

    Find out the best way to respond if you’re the target. Read more…

  • From our readers: The making of a newsletter

    inclusion loop newsletter teamWhen I was working as an ICU nurse on the evening shift, I could tell you what was happening on my unit and with my ICU colleagues. We took great care of our patients, reduced our CLABSI (central line–associated bloodstream infection) and CAUTI (catheter-associated urinary tract infection) rates, followed evidence-based practice, obtained our certification, and… Read more…

  • When nurses precept students: Views from both sides of the equation

    The author highlights differing viewpoints of the precepting experience. Read more…

  • Moving the Sharps Safety Agenda Forward: Consensus Statement and Call to Action

    Note: This Consensus Statement and Call to Action was drafted by members of the steering committee* for the conference "Tenth Anniversary of the Needlestick Safety and Prevention Act: Mapping Progress, Charting a Future Path," held in Charlottesville, Virginia, from November 4-6, 2010, and sponsored by the International Healthcare Worker Safety Center at the University of… Read more…

  • How to keep your communications professional

    Whether you communicate in person, on the phone, or via voice mail, e-mail, or text message, be sure to use proper etiquette. Read more…

  • What followers want in their nurse leaders

    Why would anyone want you to lead them? That’s a question nurses rarely ask themselves before they take on leadership positions. But it’s an important one, because if you’re honest in reflecting on your strengths and weaknesses, you can probably find many reasons why nurses wouldn’t want you to lead them. Developing yourself as a… Read more…

  • From Your ANA President

    safe staffing healthcareHAVING WORKED in an emergency department for more than 20 years, I know what it’s like to have to think fast and move fast to save a life. But for too long, registered nurses (RNs) in many settings across this nation have been working as quickly as they can—not because they are tending to an emergency… Read more…

  • How to write a book: Get started, keep going, and get published

    Writing a book is within your reach; here’s how to do it. Read more…

  • Strategies for staff engagement within a nurse residency program

    Are you getting the most from your nurse residency program? Read more…

  • What you can learn from failure

    Read more…

  • Presenting yourself professionally

    What do your first 12 words, your first 12 steps, and your top and bottom 12" say about you? Find out how the “rule of 12” can help you make a good first impression. Read more…

  • Making the workplace healthier, one self-aware nurse at a time

    From the disruptive physician throwing instruments or treating nurses with contempt to coworkers or nurse managers "eating their young," some people and behaviors in healthcare organizations threaten not only job satisfaction but patient safety. How do you react to bullying by doctors or coworkers? Do you say something while the behavior occurs? Report it to… Read more…

  • From Your ANA President

    nurse educator education learning pass alongNo matter how long we’ve been in practice, we can all remember our nursing school experience. Giving our first injection, memorizing drugs and their side effects, fine-tuning a patient’s care plan—all were important first steps on our way to becoming a nurse. How did we get through it? Partially, it was our dedication and desire… Read more…

  • SWAT nursing: A unique specialty

    specialized workforce acute transport university michigan swatWhat does SWAT stand for? So Where Are They? Smart, Witty, and Talented? Smiling, Willing, Able, Technical? At the University of Michigan Health System (UMHS), SWAT stands for a Specialized Workforce for Acute Transport. We are a dedicated transport team whose mission is to provide safe, respectful, and expert short-term care and treatment to patients… Read more…

  • ANA pays it forward

    ana nurse worldI am an organizational junkie with no apologies. As many of you know, I started my political activism in nursing when I served as president of the National Student Nurses Association (NSNA). That gave me the unique opportunity to become involved in the American Nurses Association (ANA) before I graduated from my basic nursing program.… Read more…

  • Navigating organizational politics

    organizational politics political listen selfaware relationships help promoteEditor’s note: At American Nurse Today, we believe every nurse can be a leader. This article is the first in a series by Rose Sherman, founder of the Emerging RN Leader blog (www.emergingrnleader.com). Rose will contribute articles on a regular basis to help nurses achieve their leadership potential. Maria Sanchez, an assistant nurse manager in… Read more…

  • In praise of nursing residency programs

    The author explains how a residency can take the nurse beyond
    doing nursing to being a nurse in the fullest sense. Read more…

  • Emotional intelligence: Why walking the talk transforms nursing care

    emotional intelligence managing emotions understandingSince the first emotional intelligence (EI) research in the late 1990s, EI has rocked the business world and challenged leaders and employees from dozens of professions to work differently. After hundreds of research studies, several dozen of them in nursing, some findings are clear. The highest performers, both in leadership and clinical practice roles, also… Read more…

  • When caregiving ignites burnout – New ways to douse the flames

    caregiving burnout hostility codependent empowerment wellness nurseMost nurses enjoy taking care of others — it’s what drew them into their profession and provides satisfaction throughout their careers, to varying degrees. Caregiving at its best has mutual benefits for nurse and patient. It’s a job that requires hard work, discipline, and the emotional resilience to help patients, especially those in severe pain… Read more…

  • Keeping your compassion

    Have you ever found yourself in the middle of your shift when you make a mistake in the care you’re providing—and you wonder, "Am I losing my compassion?" I have. It’s frightening, because what good are we as nurses without compassion? Sympathy and compassion can be hard to maintain in a job as stressful as… Read more…

  • Shared governance aids compliance with Magnet® model sources of evidence

    morristown medical center sg shared governance magnetOf the five Magnet® model components, the shared governance (SG) process most closely aligns with exemplary professional practice and structural empowerment. A strong culture of accountability and governance is crucial to demonstrating sources of evidence within these components. In many Magnet facilities, such as Morristown Medical Center (MMC) in Morristown, New Jersey, SG is an… Read more…

  • From our readers…Know your A, B, C, and D’s for patients with progressive disease

    know your patient nurse"Something’s wrong. We have to fix it quickly!" All of our training and experiences as nurses, such as my almost 30 years as a hospital-based RN, lead us to have this response to any unexpected negative situation. The A, B, C mnemonic for "Airway, Breathing, and Circulation" is a prime example of a means we… Read more…

  • From our readers…Practical approaches to patient advocacy barriers

    advocate advocacy speak out hands black whiteNurses know that patient advocacy is an expected and important role for their practice, but the practical implications of acting as an advocate are often left for the nurse to interpret. These include the meaning of advocacy and how to overcome institutional and educational barriers to fulfilling the role of advocate. What is advocacy? Being… Read more…

  • From our readers…Beauty in the eye of the beholder: The life of a wound, ostomy, and continence nurse

    wound care lesion ostomy continence nurseI think it’s in the eyes. That’s where the connection begins. A view into the real person, not defined by his or her disease or deformity. A calm settles in the room when a patient trusts that you are not there to judge, to turn away, to hold your breath, or to rush the visit.… Read more…

  • Are you ready to care for patients in clinical trials?

    Part 1 of a four-part series on clinical trials Read more…

  • Viewpoint: Why nurses will require a stronger back in 2012: Six key challenges facing the nursing community

    American Nurse Today editorial board member Courtney Lyder, ND, GNP, FAAN, outlines what’s at stake in 2012. Read more…

  • Ten tips for handling job interviews by phone

    More employers are using phone interviews to screen job candidates. Discover how to make the most of this technique. Read more…

  • Break the bullying cycle

    Commonplace in nursing, bullying jeopardizes nurse retention, staff morale, and patient safety. This article explores ways to banish bullying and create a healthier work environment. Read more…

  • ANCC honors clinicians with first annual Magnet® Nurse of the Year Awards

    ancc honors awards ribbonAt the National Magnet® Conference held October 4 to 6 in Baltimore, the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) presented its first Magnet® Nurse of the Year Awards to recognize the outstanding contributions of patient care clinicians working in Magnet hospitals. Five awards were given, one in each of the Magnet Model component areas. Transformational Leadership:… Read more…

  • From our readers…The value of self-knowledge

    self knowledge look think act affirmationHave you thought about what would bring joy into your life? Do you wake up excited to start the day ahead? Knowing yourself is the foundation of self-care and the basis for your relationships with family, friends, coworkers, and loved ones. Taking the time to know yourself and reflecting on how you handle situations that… Read more…

  • From our readers…Moving beyond professional friendships: Creating a professional development group

    professional development teamwork team groupA revision of the Florida Nurses Association’s (FNA) organizational plan provided an incentive for members of a local FNA district to reconsider the personal and professional benefits of membership in FNA. Minimal attendance at our district meetings and educational conferences had discouraged our enthusiasm for planning any future FNA projects. Despite these frustrations, our small… Read more…

  • Tips for applying to an advanced-degree nursing program

    advanced degree nursing program application cv personal statement school educationWhen you compete for a seat in an advanced-degree program, your application can spell the difference between acceptance and rejection. Careful preparation, attention to detail, and the ability to follow directions are paramount. Applying to an academic program entails obtaining information about the program, thoroughly and prompt­ly filling out the application and other documents, taking… Read more…

  • Strategies for a successful semester

    successful semester organize study coursework capabilities studentThese trying economic times provide opportunities for career changes. Perhaps you’re returning to college for your first degree or to obtain an additional one. Whether you’re studying for a bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree, the strategies below can help you achieve your academic goals. Organize your time Dedicate time every day to your coursework. It’s… Read more…

  • How working nights can work in your favor

    Shortly after I completed my master’s degree in nursing, I spoke with my nurse mentor about my career decisions. At the time, I was working as a night-shift emergency department educator. "Get off the night shift," she urged, "and into the real world." Her response left me both troubled and intrigued. I had spent most… Read more…

  • Transforming care through health information technology

    Editor-in-Chief Pam Cipriano interviews the nation’s health IT "czar" on
    nurses’ role in transforming health care through the electronic health record. Read more…

  • ANA launches Healthy Nurse program

    healthy nurse program rn registered nurse procedure precautionsRegistered nurses educate patients and the public on good health and wellness practices. But many times, nurses themselves are unable to take their own advice due to exposure to occupational hazards, such as infectious diseases, heavy lifting, violence, stress, compassion fatigue, and more. A nurse may spend many hours on his or her feet assisting… Read more…

  • Family history as a genetic assessment tool: Where are the resources?

    Learn the value of a genetic history and resources for how to conduct one. Read more…

  • When something goes wrong: how to disclose an error

    How should patients learn about an error? Read more…

  • Improving pain care for combat injured soldiers and veterans

    veteran soldier care patient comfortable pain careBy Rosemary C. Polomano, PhD, RN, FAAN Advances in battlefield trauma management have significantly improved survival among military personnel injured in the current Afghanistan and Iraq conflicts, compared to soldiers wounded in previous wars. Yet soldiers with serious combat injuries face devastating life-altering effects, such as major limb deformities, amputations, and traumatic brain injuries. Combat injuries can damage… Read more…

  • Our Readers Respond

    submission submit high energy drink substance abuseThe truth about high-energy drinks Re "High-energy drinks: What you don’t know could hurt you" (August article available here): I am very impressed with the information…presented. I always knew high-energy drinks contained large quantities of caffeine and sugar, but the herbal ingredients were a shocker for me. These drinks are eye openers in moderation but… Read more…

  • Special Report – War on Pain

    Nursing Strategies to Improve Pain Care in Veterans and Military Personnel Read more…

  • Ready, set, go! How to return to the nursing workforce

    refresh knowledge child work return career nurseAre you an RN who has been out of the workforce? Your talents, experience and expertise are needed in all healthcare settings. While technology and treatments have changed, human responses to illness and injury remain the same. Patients have pain, anxiety, and fear. They experience cardiopulmonary failure. Families and patients need health education. They need… Read more…

  • From our readers. . . Is disaster relief nursing for you?

    disaster relief psychological practical prepareRecently I had the opportunity to provide nursing services after an earthquake disaster in the Caribbean. In this article, I share my insights gained from that trip, service opportunities, and considerations for whether or not disaster relief nursing is an appropriate choice for you. I also provide practical information for those who anticipate relief service.… Read more…

  • The impaired nurse: Would you know what to do if you suspected substance abuse?

    Check your knowledge of substance abuse in nurses. Read more…

  • Professional social networking for nurses

    professional networking social media networkWHEN MY GRANDPARENTS were children, they communicated in person or by letter. In my parents’ generation, the telephone became popular. Today, much of our communication takes place through social media—namely, social networking websites and services. Websites such as Facebook® and LinkedIn® and social media services such as Twitter® let us connect with a network of… Read more…

  • Simple steps to improve your retirement readiness

    PERHAPS, like many nurses, you’ve become quite business savvy over the past few years. Increasing numbers of nurses are responsible for creating unit budgets, forecasting expenses, and calculating cost effectiveness. Yet when asked about their personal finances and retirement planning, few nurses express confidence in their financial abilities. A recent national survey of registered nurses (RNs) found that nearly 45%… Read more…

  • From our readers…How my students kept me teaching

    nurse teaching clinical class studentsI went to high school in a small New England town at a time when career opportunities for women were just beginning to branch out into a variety of non-traditional fields rather than the traditional teaching and nursing. Women were also looking toward careers instead of "jobs." At that time, I viewed teaching as a… Read more…

  • From our readers…Do veteran nurses really eat their young? Observations of an ‘older’ new nurse

    veteran nurse young rn phd supportAfter working successfully for more than 20 years as a graphic artist and structural designer, I decided to enter nursing school at the age of 43. After graduation, I faced a new career and the rumor about nurses “eating their young”? What was that supposed to mean? Was this a reference to Little Red Riding… Read more…

  • From our readers…Developing professional PRIDE

    pride promote recognize individual development excellence programCreating a professional development program at our hospital began with the house-wide partnership (practice) council chartering a task force of front-line staff to design a program as a retention initiative for RN staff. Program objectives were to create a program that would define and support professional practice, attract and retain clinical experts in direct care,… Read more…

  • Stenvig appointed to National Vaccine Advisory Committee

    thomas stenvig national vaccine advisory committeeThomas Stenvig, PhD, MPH, RN, CNAA-BC, has a long and distinguished career in immunization and public health. And now, he has a new achievement in national immunization policy leadership to add to that career. Earlier this year, Stenvig was appointed to the National Vaccine Advisory Committee (NVAC), a national group that advises the federal government… Read more…

  • Jo Eleanor Elliott: A legacy of courage

    jo eleanor elliott legacy"Helmets down, lances up, full speed ahead." Those were the parting words of inspiration Eleanor Elliott gave to colleagues last year when the National League for Nursing honored her with its President’s Award as a Champion for Nursing Education. High-spirited and fearless, Jo Eleanor was beloved by friends and family—and revered by colleagues as a… Read more…

  • Smoothing the transition from bedside to classroom

    smooth transition bedside classroom member faculty researchA career as a nursing faculty member is an exciting option for clinical nurses eager to share their clinical experiences as they teach and mentor the next generation of nurses. This article describes the roles and responsibilities of nursing faculty and identifies the skills needed to make a smooth transition from the clinical setting to… Read more…

  • Voice mail etiquette

    voicemail etiquette speak confidence briefFor any professional, voice mail (VM) is no longer optional; it’s necessary. How you use VM can work for or against you. The tips below can help you avoid common VM blunders, enhance your professional image, and improve your productivity. Be prepared, brief, and discreet When making a phone call, always be prepared to leave… Read more…

  • Environment, health, & safety

    destress stress mitigate stressors nurseChallenges are motivating. When we meet and overcome challenges, we learn new skills that help us master our job. However, challenges shouldn’t be confused with job stress. Both challenges and stress present some level of initial discomfort, but challenges energize us psychologically and physically, whereas stress is detrimental. According to the National Institute for Occupational… Read more…

  • From our readers…Strengthening nursing networks

    alumni networking connecting connectionsHave you ever wondered what happened to the student who studied with you for that beginning med-surg test or the instructor who helped you understand pediatrics? They may be wondering where you are too. Networking with student and faculty colleagues is a powerful way to connect for both social and professional benefits. Networking consists of… Read more…

  • Clarifying the clinical nurse leader role: guardian of care

    clinical nurse leader guardian care roleThe role of clinical nurse leader (CNL) has received a mixed reception within nursing, primarily because of a lack of understanding as to how to transfer the role and its purpose into clinical practice, as well as a lack of clarity between the CNL role and that of other master’s prepared nurses such as the… Read more…

  • Understanding the link between genomics and brain illness

    geonomics brain illnessEditor’s note: One of a series of articles from the National Human Genome Research Institute. http://www.genome.gov/ All nurses in clinical practice interact at least occasionally with patients who have psychiatric diagnoses or undiagnosed brain illness. (Note: The author prefers the term brain illness to mental illness or psychiatric illness in the belief that it’s less… Read more…

  • Move up to the role of nurse manager

    nurse manager commandNURSE MANAGERS at all levels work together to address emerging trends, adopt innovative ideas, and work toward the shared goals of quality, efficiency, and excellence in practice. They guide and lead frontline nurses while contributing to an organization’s success. Some of the most rewarding experiences happen on the front lines. The nurse manager is responsible… Read more…

  • From Your ANA President

    nurse patient careful safety cautionA perspective on trauma When nurses think of trauma, what most often comes to mind are patients who enter the health system for care after traumatic injuries—a fall, an assault, a motor vehicle accident, a gunshot or stab wound, for instance. As we provide care to these patients–or to any patient who comes to us—it’s… Read more…

  • Can a nurse be too old to work at the bedside?

    elder nurse old ageRead guest blogger Donna Cardillo’s thought-provoking article about when age comes into play during a nurse’s career. A recent New York Times article begged the question, “How old is too old for doctors to continue practicing medicine?” It noted that increasing numbers of physicians are now over 65 years old and cited instances where some physicians, who apparently… Read more…

  • Waltzing through the behavioral job interview

    More employers are using
    behavioral interviews to learn not just what applicants can do but who they really are and whether they’d enhance or detract from an existing team’s potential to achieve optimal
    patient outcomes. Read more…

  • Retaining nurse managers

    nurse manager retain benefitsThe nurse manager role is pivotal in staff nurse satisfaction and retention, quality of patient care, and achieving organizational goals, which is why the decreasing numbers of qualified nurse managers in the acute care environment is of concern. The American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE) reported vacancy rates for nurse managers are on average as… Read more…

  • From our readers…Three elephants for safety

    slow steady wins safety rush procedureA familiar safety protocol in hospitals is the time-out. Mandated for many invasive procedures, this “work stop” ensures the right site, right procedure, and right patient are verified and confirmed by at least two practitioners before “scalpel touches skin.” Following the five rights of medication administration is equally important to ensure nurses maintain zero tolerance… Read more…

  • Better care for patients with borderline personality disorder

    borderline personality disorder care understandAdult nurse practitioners (NPs) encounter patients with a wide range of challenging behaviors. Some of these behaviors can be especially hard to manage and may even preclude successful treatment. One group of such behaviors occurs in persons with borderline personality disorder (BPD), marked by behavioral and emotional traits that can disrupt treatment. BPD is one… Read more…

  • Headlines from the Hill

    ANA recently cohosted a Senate Nursing Caucus briefing to present final results from the 2008 National Sample Survey of Registered Nurses, and participated in a healthcare reform conference call with Michelle Obama. Read more…

  • Issues up close

    professional social mediaAwful day. Dealt with cranky, unreasonable pt with gross incision. Headed for *$. Gone are the “Dear Diary” days when one’s written frustrations or observations were kept under lock and key—or perhaps spoken in confidence to a trusted friend. Instead, some nurses and nursing students, like the general public, are sharing their lives through social… Read more…

  • Our readers respond

    submission submit high energy drink substance abuseConcurring on “quantum” nursing I was delighted with Leah Curtin’s eloquent description of the beliefs I’ve embraced in my nursing career (“Quan­tum nursing,” September 2010). I have “preached” about the therapeutic use of self to nursing students, urged obstetric nursing students I’ve precepted to fully trust their intuition, and pondered the meaning and use of… Read more…

  • Do you need a business card?

    business card questionsIf you've been wondering whether you should have a business card, or if you've decided to get a business card but you're not sure what to do next, consider these five questions. Why do I need a business card? To network, every professional needs a business card that captures essential contact information. Recently, a colleague… Read more…

  • Preventing polypharmacy in older adults

    polypharmacy eldery patientPolypharmacy refers to the effects of taking multiple medications concurrently to manage coexisting health problems, such as diabetes and hypertension. Too often, polypharmacy becomes problematic, such as when patients are prescribed too many medications by multiple healthcare providers working independently of each other. Also, drug interactions can occur if no single healthcare provider knows the… Read more…

  • Nursing’s role in healthcare reform

    nurse rise leadersThe 2010 healthcare reform act (Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, or PPACA) gives nurses new opportunities to deliver care and play an integral role in leading change. (See http://championnursing.org/sites/default/files/nursingandhealthreformlawtable.pdf.) Understanding these opportunities is just the first step. We need to know how we can be part of the solution to achieve better patient outcomes… Read more…

  • Editorial

    nurse patient skilled staff nurseI always loved taking care of patients. It was fun, exciting, intellectually stimulating, and rewarding. To this day, I remember special patients and keep in touch with the daughter of a patient who died following emergency surgery just days after he retired. Few experiences compare to the thrill of saving a life, the triumph of… Read more…

  • What does a Nursing Professional Development Specialist (Nurse Educator) do?

    nurse educator teachLet’s assume for a moment that you just graduated from nursing school. You have a brand new degree, a little clinical hospital training, lots of new information, and a brief job as a nursing assistant in a community living center for geriatric residents. The hospital of your dreams just hired you as a registered nurse.… Read more…

  • Strengthening your evidence base: Focus on safe patient handling

    patient care handle safetyOver the last 3 years, important new evidence has emerged about safe patient handling. You can apply this evidence at the bedside to help protect yourself and your patients from injury. Below we describe the top 10 new findings and their potential impact. 1. Back pain and injuries in nurses are widespread. The evidence: Despite… Read more…

  • Nurse names new head of Institute for Healthcare Improvement

    Bisognano MaureenMaureen Bisognano, who started her career as a staff nurse, was named chief executive officer for Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), replacing Donald Berwick, MD, who President Barack Obama appointed to head the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). Bisognano is currently IHI’s chief operating officer. Read more.

  • Preventing preceptor burnout

    Preventing preceptor burnoutNew graduate nurses are vital to the success of healthcare organizations. We need their “new blood” to fill workforce gaps. But it’s not easy to help novice nurses become confident and safely functioning members of the healthcare team. It could take at least a year for them to feel comfortable enough to work on their… Read more…

  • Understanding the DNP degree

    doctor nursing programFor years, doctorally prepared nurses have focused on issues that help define nursing as a profession. In contrast, nurses involved in direct patient care have dealt consistently with inadequate staffing, high nurse-patient ratios, mandatory overtime, safety issues, and lack of respect. Does this dichotomy reflect a lack of cohesive vision and leadership in nursing? Do nursing leaders and professional organizations truly understand the day-to-day… Read more…

  • Scrapbooks capture nurses career milestones

    For nurse graduates, starting their first staff position is an exciting time, but it can also be a time of apprehension. Many have heard stories about how some nurses “eat their young” and may wonder how readily they can acclimate to their new unit. Scrapbooking is one way for experienced nurses to welcome new graduates… Read more…

  • How to increase developmental opportunities for frontline nurse leaders

    frontline nurse leader organizationOver the decades, the role of the frontline nurse manager has evolved from head nurse to nurse leader. With this evolution, the traditional managerial functions of planning, leading, organizing, and controlling a unit or division have expanded to include additional leadership competencies, such as: communicating the organization’s vision and mission to staff providing consistent feedback… Read more…

  • From Your ANA President

    achievements nurse award recognitionNational Nurses Week is an opportunity to reflect on the contributions nurses make to the healthcare environment. Every day, nurses make a commitment to building an even more powerful nursing profession to address the complexities of patient care, reshape our workplaces, and influence broader health policies that benefit patients and the public. This year’s theme,… Read more…

  • AMERICAN NURSE TODAY WINS TWO ASHPE AWARDS

    ashpe award ant american nurse todayAmerican Nurse Today, the official journal of the American Nurses Association (ANA), today announced that its June 2009 cover, Autism Today, has been named “Best Cover” by the American Society of Healthcare Publication Editors (ASHPE). In addition to the Gold Award for Best Cover (Photo), the February 2009 issue of American Nurse Today received a… Read more…

  • My First Day in the ED

    emergency department nurseNote: This article was written before Kenneth graduated from nursing school. My first experience in an emergency department (ED) setting happened last week at Frankfort Regional Medical Center in Kentucky. As a new nursing student, one of my intended paths for my career will be as a trauma nurse, and this was a good introductory… Read more…

  • Beyond a box of chocolates

    thank you gift patient givingOften, patients and families express their gratitude for a special nurse's outstanding care with spoken thanks or heartfelt commendations written to a nursing supervisor. Some even offer a small gift, perhaps a box of chocolates or a fruit basket. Most nurses are skilled at accepting these tokens of appreciation with gracious responses like,It's why I… Read more…

  • Nearly half of nurses plan career change

    career change survey statisticsA 2010 survey of registered nurses from AMN healthcare found that 44% of the 1,399 nurses who completed the survey plan to make a career change over the next three years and more than one-third reported job dissatisfaction. Almost 50% of the respondents were nurses between the ages of 40-49, and 59% of the nurses currently… Read more…

  • From our readers…The Dance

    dance nurse progress grad confidenceLinda Harrington, RNC, works in Labor and Delivery at Providence Holy Cross Medical Center, Mission Hills, CA. Below she comments on her experience with writing this poem: When the CNO asked me if I could "come up with something" to submit to the Magnet Art Gallery my first thought was, "Are you kidding me? No… Read more…

  • The many merits of mentoring

    mentor protege relationship career jobHave you ever felt unsure about your next career step or just needed advice from a more seasoned professional? Natalie Murphy, co-author of this article, felt that way a few years ago. Her solution: find a mentor. Here's her story: After 15 years of clinical nursing, I wanted a career change. So I began teaching… Read more…

  • Plan a career, not just a job

    career love job“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?” “That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,” said the Cat. “I don’t much care where—” said Alice. “Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,” said the Cat. “—so long as I get somewhere,” Alice added as… Read more…

  • When a hospital dies

    What happens when a nurse's work environment ceases to exist? The author describes how a hospital's closure forced both staff and patients to cope with their greif and loss. Read more…

  • Jump-start your job search

    Out of work? Don't let a challenging economy and difficult job market get you down. The author's tips can job search into high gear. Read more…

  • Could anything be finer than to work in Carolina?

    north south carolina carolinas outer banks raleigh durham triangle charolette charlestonSeashores, mountains, rolling countryside, booming cities, major historic sites—the Carolinas offer something for everyone. North Carolina is one of the five fastest-growing states in the country. Its three large metropolitan areas—Charlotte, the Raleigh-Durham Tri­angle area, and the Piedmont area—have populations exceeding 1 million. Forbes magazine named Raleigh the best place in America for business and… Read more…

  • Caregiving for a family member can be difficult

    caregiver holding hands care familyNursing is my passion. I began to work as a professional caregiver 35 years ago. If I had to make a career choice today, I would still choose to become a nurse. Yet nursing school could not have prepared me for the challenge of caring for a family member. Being a professional caregiver differs from being… Read more…

  • Deal with professional disappointment like a pro

    dealing with disappointment overcome manageFew nurses escape the sting of professional disappointment over the course of their careers. Despite your best efforts, you can’t always triumph. But you can prepare for a professional letdown. Plan ahead Before you take your next professional risk, consider what you’ll do if you’re disappointed. Write two or three short sentences to use if… Read more…

  • How to stay safe in a sometimes-scary world

    Avoid becoming a victim of violence on the job, at home and while traveling. Read more…

  • Why more nurses should write for publication (but don’t)

    writing write publish published publicationNo matter where nurses practice or how stressful their work lives are, many use words like “delighted” and “exhilarated” to describe how they feel when they write about their work. What’s more, by writing a single article, you can reach more people than you could over a lifetime of nursing practice. So why don’t more… Read more…

  • From your ANA President

    cpr cardiopulmonary resuscitationAs healthcare professionals, we all know CPR to mean “cardiopulmonary resuscitation,” and we have all been trained in how to perform it. But CPR also has another important meaning to registered nurses, and especially to advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs). CPR stands for the Coalition for Patients’ Rights, an advocacy group made up of 37… Read more…

  • Dementia: The quiet thief

    dementia quiet thief nurse forgetfulThe nurse’s note read, “not orientated to place and time due to dementia.” Several hours of general anesthesia for a knee replacement and then morphine via a patient-controlled analgesia pump had not been kind to my father’s brain. Age 88 at the time, he had never shown any signs of dementia. Yet, with the patient-controlled… Read more…

  • Thank you, Linda

    linda stierle army us air forceI happen to know how Linda Stierle got her start in nursing. When she was a little 7-year-old, a doctor ordered that she receive a penicillin shot. After enduring the dreaded ordeal, Linda marched into the doctor’s office to inform him that when she grew up, she would become a nurse—and she would give him… Read more…

  • Effective transitions

    nurse residency programANA, nurse leaders support RN residency programs. Although most new nurses are excited when they finally begin their careers, their enthusiasm can be dampened by worries about keeping pace with new workloads, becoming familiar with policies and procedures, and—even worse—harming a patient. More than 50% of new nurse graduates leave their first position within 12… Read more…

  • Why go back for a baccalaureate degree?

    Find out if a return to school makes sense for you. Read more…

  • The lies we tell ourselves

    little white lie storiesWhen was the last time you lied? Come on now, be honest. The unvarnished truth is that few among us are really honest. I’m not suggesting that we aren’t forthright with other people. I’m talking about being dishonest with ourselves. I’m talking about the lies we tell ourselves. Little white lies Admit it. You lie… Read more…

  • Environment, health and safety

    health safety environment musculoskeletal disorder nurseANA has been very concerned with and involved in the issue of ergonomic hazards as a health and safety concern in the workplace. Musculoskeletal injuries resulting from patient handling are responsible for much physical discomfort and suffering in nurses and can lead to debilitating, life-altering and, at times, career-ending injury. In 2003, the ANA Board… Read more…

  • Nursing jobs in tough economic times

    nursing education school graduate“The tassel is worth the hassle” reads the inscription on a card I recently purchased for a college graduate. Unfortunately, for the first time in many years, new graduate nurses may find graduation to be a melancholy event. Because of recurrent shortages, nurses have become used to the job security and wide range of opportunities… Read more…

  • American Nurse, American Talent

    american steve price nurse hospice CD musicA Registered Nurse since 1982, Steve Price began his healthcare career in the U.S. Navy in 1971 as a hospital corpsman. He spent 15 years in the dialysis field and worked for 8 years in a cardiac catheterization lab and for 3 years in clinical research. In the last 6 years, Steve has found his… Read more…

  • Flying high to save lives

    flight nurse helicopter airplane military transport careerFlight nursing offers rewards that few other nursing jobs can match. Across the globe, patients are transported from accident scenes or between healthcare facilities every day. Most medical transport is provided either by a hospital or other healthcare entity or by a stand-alone program. Both types of organizations hire flight nurses. The focus of the… Read more…

  • A user’s guide to cell-phone etiquette

    Be a smart, savvy cell-phone user.
    Read more…

  • The many merits of mentoring

    mentor mentoring mentee meritsHave you ever felt unsure about your next career step or just needed advice from a more seasoned professional? Natalie Murphy, co-author of this article, felt that way a few years ago. Her solution: find a mentor. Here's her story: After 15 years of clinical nursing, I wanted a career change. So I began teaching… Read more…

  • Occupational stress

    occupational stress reduce destressAll work environments have the potential to cause stressful situations, but are healthcare settings particularly demanding? According to a 2008 report by the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, studies indicate healthcare workers have higher rates of substance abuse and suicide than other professions. They also have elevated rates of depression and anxiety linked… Read more…

  • What I’m hearing about competence

    prepare plan rn competenceAs ANA president, I have the privilege of representing RNs, the nursing profession, and the ANA in many local, state, regional, national, and international settings. Those responsibilities have turned me into a “road warrior” who spends many hours reading to stay current and to prepare for presentations on nursing practice and policy issues. I’m pleased… Read more…

  • Easing your way back to school

    education continuing school programPlace a checkmark on the line next to each statement that applies to you: You’ve seen how quickly your nursing knowledge becomes outdated. You’d like to join a nursing faculty. Your hospital has heard the Magnet™ call and wants to raise the educational level of its nursing staff. You realize that with health care growing… Read more…

  • Expanding your nursing career horizons sidebar

    expanding career horizon pdf downloadPlease click on download now to access this additional content in PDF format.

  • Expand your nursing career horizons

    Read about new specialist and advanced practice roles and new areas about nursing responsibility.
    Read more…

  • Nurising’s contribution to patient care

    nurse contribution patton zalonEditor’s note: This month’s column is cowritten by Rebecca Patton and Margarete L. Zalon, President of the American Nurses Foundation. We have stories to tell about nurses and nursing practice—and we are increasingly called on to tell them. Nursing practice needs to be based on stories from research and the accumulation of research findings that… Read more…

  • Letters to the Editor – December 2008

    letters editor hope_breast cancer dnp degree nightA glimmer of hope after breast cancer I want to thank Mary K. Hughes for her article “Sex after breast cancer: Helping your patient cope” (October). I was one of the lucky ones: I underwent a mastectomy and lymph node biopsy for stage I invasive breast cancer. I didn’t need chemotherapy and was started on… Read more…

  • Professional etiquette: The protocols you didn’t learn in nursing school

    etiquette professional judging business impressionIf you’re aiming for advancement and career success, you need more than clinical expertise, more than management savvy, more than leadership skills. You need to practice professional etiquette. Many nurses already know that following social conventions is just as important to career advancement as networking at nursing conventions. After my seminars on professional etiquette, nurses… Read more…

  • BSN in ten

    bsn school education degree rnNurse leaders nationwide promote measure to benefit patient care and RNs’ careers. To garner support for a measure that promotes initiatives requiring future nurses to obtain their BSN in 10 years to continue practicing, long-time New York registered nurse Karen Ballard invoked the rallying cry during ANA’s recent House of Delegates (HOD): “If not us,… Read more…

  • Surviving the night shift

    night shift nurse survive sleep tired cancer awakeEarly in my nursing career, I rotated shifts—from days to evenings and then to a 2-week schedule of nights. One of my most eye-opening experiences (literally) came one night when I awoke to find myself standing with my forehead planted squarely on the medication closet door. I’d been asleep for only a few minutes, but… Read more…

  • One giant leap

    leap giant moon nurse ndnqiMany of us may be too young to remember the original broadcast of Neil Armstrong landing on the moon, but we all know how significant it was for us—not just as a nation, but as a world community. Before the moon landing, do you remember hearing about others’ perceptions or theories of what the moon… Read more…

  • And the music plays on…

    elderly couple song togetherIn the mid-1970s, I was a graduate nurse starting my career at a large, urban hospital. One of my patients, an elderly man named Eddie, had just been diagnosed with a terminal illness. My nursing colleagues and I developed a plan of care to keep him as comfortable as possible while providing emotional support for… Read more…

  • Why you need an electronic professional portfolio

    portfolio online professional job career searchYou can think of an electronic professional portfolio as being similar to an electronic health record. An electronic health record captures all the clinical conditions and interventions over the course of a patient’s life. An electronic portfolio captures all professional development data and supporting documents over the course of a nurse’s career. A professional portfolio—whether… Read more…

  • Take Note – September 2008

    notes note pink importantJohnson & Johnson’s Campaign for Nursing’s Future     In 2002, Johnson & Johnson launched the Campaign for Nursing’s Future to enhance the image of nursing, help recruit new nurses and nurse faculty, and help retain nurses in the profession. Now in its sixth year, the campaign has helped attract more than 500,000 people to nursing. It… Read more…

  • Nephrology nurses: Passionate about their specialty

    nephrology kidney specialty“What I find most exciting and interesting about the specialty is that we are truly dealing with every organ system,” says Anne Harty, MS, FNP, BC, CNN, Carmichael, Calif. “Nephrology nurses save lives every day. That says it all,” says Caroline Counts, MSN, RN, CNN, Charleston, S.C. If you want to meet someone who’s excited about… Read more…

  • The personal risks of advocating for patients

    patient advocacy advocateMost people take pledges at some point in their lives: They promise to live by the Girl Scout law or swear to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth. Anyone who becomes an RN agrees to a lifetime pledge: to adhere to an ethical code and professional nursing standards. ANA’s Code of Ethics… Read more…

  • The Maslow effect: A humanist legacy for nursing

    abraham maslow hierarchy humanist idealist theorist teacher healthIn the late 1960s, psychologist Abraham Maslow was moved by the kindness of the nurses and nursing students he encountered when hospitalized for heart disease. Curious about why they went into nursing, he questioned them closely about their motivation and satisfaction: Why did they choose and remain loyal to such demanding work? What did they… Read more…

  • Nurse anesthetists: Demand is up and the secret is out

    anesthetists anesthesia careerCertified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs) were once called the “best kept secret in health care,” but not today. With the U.S. population aging and more surgical procedures being performed in ambulatory surgical centers and physicians’ offices, the demand for anesthesia care is growing. And nurses are entering the field in increasing numbers. In 1999, 948… Read more…

  • The wisdom of renewal

    wisdom renewal sign fearWe all know people who have become discontent with their careers. And we know people who remain energized, excited, and fully engaged in their profession. So what makes the difference? How can we all cultivate the self-care and consciousness to stay energized, centered, and engaged in nursing? Three words: reflection, wisdom, and renewal. Nurses who engage… Read more…

  • References – July 2008

    referencesAmerican Nurse Today July 2008 References Caring for chronic wounds: A knowledge update Burrows C, Miller R, Townsend D, et al. Best practice recommendations for the prevention and treatment of venous leg ulcers: Update 2006. Adv Skin Wound Care. 2007;20(11):611-624. Collins N. Nutrition and wound healing: strategies to improve patient outcomes. Wounds. 2004;16(suppl 9):12S-18S. Evans… Read more…

  • Take Note – July 2008

    kid eating healthy child girl veggies vegetableMeasles outbreak       Between January 1 and April 25, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention received reports of 64 measles cases in nine states—the highest number for the same time period since 2001. Of the 64 people infected, only 1 had proof of being vaccinated. The other 63 weren’t vaccinated either because they were too… Read more…

  • Take Note – June 2008

    exercise child children kid obesityFailure to rescue is most common safety mistake in hospitals       HealthGrades’ fifth annual Patient Safety in American Hospitals Study found that failure to rescue and other patient safety incidents led to 238,337 potentially preventable deaths during 2004 through 2006, which cost the federal Medicare program $8.8 billion. The analysis of 41 million Medicare patient records… Read more…

  • Staff development educators: Helping to improve patient outcomes

    staff educator learning patient improveNurses have long focused on providing high-quality, evidence-based care to help achieve better patient outcomes—and staff development educators are crucial to this endeavor. We asked Barbara Brunt, MA, MN, RN-BC, President of the National Nursing Staff Development Organization (NNSDO), to tell readers about the organization and the vital role the staff development educator plays in… Read more…

  • Chief nurse officer takes on full range of public health issues

    public health issues chief nurse romano career governmentRear Admiral Carol A. Romano, PhD, RN, FAAN, is the Assistant Surgeon General and Chief Nurse Officer for the United States Public Health Service (USPHS). Since her appointment to these prestigious positions in November 2005, she has overseen a wide range of national initiatives from disaster response to childhood obesity. In February 2008, she was… Read more…

  • References – May 2008

    book referenceAmerican Nurse Today - May 2008 Complete References CRRT spells success against acute renal failure in critically ill patients Bell M, Granath F, Schon S, Ekbom A, Martling CR. Continuous renal replacement therapy is associated with less chronic renal failure than intermittent haemodialysis after acute renal failure. Intensive Care Med. 2007;33:773-780. Bellomo R, Ronco C.… Read more…

  • Take Note – May 2008

    std teenage women girlOne in four U.S. teenage girls has an STD According to a recent federal study, one in four American teenage girls has a sexually transmitted disease (STD), even though only about half of the girls in the study acknowledged having had sex. Among those who admitted having sex, the STD rate was 40%. Keep in… Read more…

  • Nurse Researcher: A career, not just a job

    research nurse career jobFor me, nursing has never been a "punch-the-time-clock" job; it’s a profession. Early on, I decided to always keep my career interesting. There are many ways to do this; I did it by choosing a career in nursing research. What nursing research is all about You may be wondering, "What exactly is nursing research?" Simply… Read more…

  • Consider a career as a wound, ostomy, and continence nurse

    wound ostomy continence nurseIn 2008, hospitals, extended-care facilities, and home-health agencies will face these regulatory and patient-care issues: • high expenses for supplies • unsatisfied patients • facility-acquired pressure ulcers • prolonged healing time of wounds • ostomy complications • facility-acquired infections • extended patient stays. As a wound, ostomy, and continence (WOC) nurse, you’d be taught to… Read more…

  • Q&A with the Executive Director of AWHONN

    awhonn womens health obstetric neonatal nurseIn May, we celebrate Nurses’ Week, Women’s Health Week, and Mother’s Day. In the spirit of these celebrations, we asked Joseph C. Isaacs, CAE, Executive Director of the Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN) to tell our readers about the association. What is AWHONN? For nearly 40 years, AWHONN has been the… Read more…

  • Joining the fight for safe staffing: Q&A with Congresswoman Ginny Brown-Waite

    safe staffInterview by Michelle M. Artz, MA Last November, Rep. Ginny Brown-Waite (R-FL) joined with Rep. Lois Capps (D-CA) to introduce H.R. 4138, the RN Safe Staffing Act. H.R. 4138 would require each hospital, in consultation with the nursing staff, to develop and implement a staffing system ensuring an appropriate number of registered nurses on each… Read more…

  • Take Note – April 2008

    fall falling high riskPam Cipriano to receive ANA’s Distinguished Member Award American Nurse Today Editor-in-Chief Pamela Cipriano, PhD, RN, FAAN, will receive the Distinguished Member Award from the American Nurses Association (ANA) in June, in recognition for her outstanding leadership, participation in, and contributions to ANA purposes. Dr. Cipriano has provided more than 30 years of continuous service… Read more…

  • Networking for nurses

    networking network nurse goalSherry stands nervously in the doorway, watching several dozen people chat each other up. The sound of her heartbeat threatens to drown out the conversational din. For the people on the other side of the door, this is a networking event. But for Sherry, it seems like a swap meet of business cards. If Sherry… Read more…

  • Let international travel transform you

    travel international business worldIf you want to accelerate your professional development, learn about nurses and patients in other cultures, broaden your world view, and be transformed by your work experience, international travel might be for you. This career journey will allow you to understand and appreciate patients from other cultures and help you adapt your care to them.… Read more…

  • Telling nursing’s stories: Reality or fiction?

    story writing write book“You’re going to do what?” my colleagues asked when I told them I planned to quit my job to write mysteries. I had a good job as dean of the School of Nursing at the University of Kansas, rewarding professional activities, and a productive career writing for nurses. I decided, however, to marry my two… Read more…

  • Take Note – March 2008

    insulin notes therapy shotUpdated guidelines on end-of-life care To improve the quality of palliative end-of-life care, the American College of Physicians has revised its guidelines. According to the new recommendations, clinicians should regularly evaluate end-of-life patients for pain, dyspnea, and depression and ensure that patients complete advance care planning, including advance directives. www.annals.org/cgi/content/full/148/2/135 Registered nurses have a lower… Read more…

  • Leadership: A conversation with Joanne Disch, AARP Board Chair

    leadership leader relationshipJoanne Disch, PhD, RN, FAAN, always knew she’d be a leader, but she didn’t envision chairing the board of the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), the world’s largest nonprofit, nonpartisan membership organization, with 38 million members and 2,000 employees.“I didn’t imagine I would be a leader in AARP, but the position is congruent with… Read more…

  • Take Note – February 2008

    inhaler dry powder note mrsa dementiaElizabeth Battaglino Cahill, RN, named executive director of National Women’s Health Resource Center The National Women's Health Resource Center (NWHRC) has appointed Elizabeth Battaglino Cahill as its executive director. She will oversee NWHRC and develop innovative programs and strategies to advance education about women's health concerns. A co-founder of NWHRC, Ms. Battaglino Cahill previously served… Read more…

  • Piquing new nurses’ interest in gerontologic nursing

    gerontologic elder older old aging nurse patientIt’s no surprise to nurses who choose to work with older adults that many of their current or future colleagues would rather focus on caring for those at the other end of the age spectrum.A 2007 survey by Evercare, a national care-coordination program for older adults and persons with long-term health issues, bears that out.… Read more…

  • How to fit in fast at your new job

    job new fast goodwill preparedIf you’re looking for a new position in nursing, you have lots of company. According to a CareerBuilder.com survey, 32% of nurses plan to change jobs within a year, and 18% plan to change within 6 months. Of course, a new job can be stimulating, but it can also be stressful. Not only will you… Read more…

  • Caring for my best friend

    dog sick caring best friendLike many of my colleagues, I became a nurse because of my desire to help people. I wanted to relieve suffering, offer comfort, and restore health. I wanted to make a difference.   Over the last 30 years, nursing has given me all the rewards I was seeking in a career. I’ve always known that my… Read more…

  • The unintended consequences of being unremarkable

    happy nurse unremarkable consequencesDid you make an investment in 2007 in your future? What nursing conference did you attend last year? Have you used anything from that conference to improve your nursing practice? Have you done anything else for your own professional development? Are you prepared to set out on your 2008 professional practice journey?  If your answer… Read more…

  • Spotlight on three nurse researchers: ANF grants help build expertise to benefit patients and nurses

    nurse pink blue white scrubs scholar grantNurse researchers play a vital role in health care throughout this country. Their work can make a huge difference in determining how care can best be delivered at the bedside, how workplaces can be improved, and how people can live healthier lives.Like all researchers, they need funding to conduct their work.  One crucial source of… Read more…

  • Tme magnetic matrix: Building blocks of Magnet™ hospitals

    handshake nurse relationshipEven during a nursing shortage, building magnetism into a healthcare environment promotes better patient outcomes, lower mortality rates, and higher patient satisfaction. Although Magnet™ hospitals don’t escape the effects of national healthcare trends, such as cost-cutting and other pressures, certain characteristics allow them to respond differently.  In the April issue, we explored nurse staffing, autonomy,… Read more…

  • Take Note – December 2007

    colonoscopy cancer note nurse healthcarePrevious pneumonia vaccination reduces ICU admissions Among adults hospitalized for pneumonia, those who’ve been vaccinated against the disease are less likely than unvaccinated patients to require admission to an intensive care unit (ICU). A study found that patients with community-acquired pneumonia who’d received prior 23-valent polysaccharide pneumococcal vaccine (PPV) had about a 40% lower rate… Read more…

  • Legal nurse consultant: A career at the crossroads of health care and the law

    legal nurse consultant law healthcareThe jurors file into the courtroom, avoiding eye contact with the attorneys and spectators. I hold my breath. The plaintiff’s attorney straightens his tie; the defense attorney flexes his shoulders—both bracing for the jury’s decision. I scrutinize the jurors’ faces, but can’t tell what they’re thinking—or how they’ve voted.  Next to me sits the mother… Read more…

  • Funding the future of nursing

    fund funding research nursingWhat do ANA members Pamela Mitchell, Elaine Larson, Ann Rogers, and Dorothy Brooten have in common? Early in their careers, each received a research grant from the American Nurses Foundation (ANF). And each has had a lasting impact on nursing. ANF was founded as the educational, scientific, and charitable arm of the ANA. Over the… Read more…

  • Beyond a box of chocolates

    gift patient gratitude thanks acceptanceOften, patients and families express their gratitude for a special nurse’s outstanding care with spoken thanks or heartfelt commendations written to a nursing supervisor. Some even offer a small gift, perhaps a box of chocolates or a fruit basket. Most nurses are skilled at accepting these tokens of appreciation  with gracious responses like, “It’s why… Read more…

  • Take Note – November 2007

    depression effects health black white noteMedical illiteracy can kill A 6-year study of 3,260 patients ages 65 and older found that almost 40% of those considered medically illiterate died during the study. Only 19% of those who were considered medically literate died. After factoring in patient health and other variables, the medically illiterate patients were still more likely to die.… Read more…

  • How to leave a job gracefully

    quit leave job resignI was diligent. I completed my tasks on time. And I took on extra assignments and shifts. My boss was so impressed that he gave me a generous raise after 6 months. The next day, he fired me.Later, I learned that Mr. Boss fired everyone after he gave a raise, so he could hire someone… Read more…

  • Letters to the Editor – November 2007

    letter letters mail editorA timely expression of support “Being with dying” in the September issue was timely for my staff and me. I am an RN Unit manager for a 46-bed dementia unit in a 166-bed long-term care facility. I have the pleasure of working with a dedicated staff of LPNs and CNAs. This week we are in… Read more…

  • Take Note – October 2007

    washing wash hands hygiene noteMedicare to stop reimbursing hospitals for eight preventable conditions Medicare will stop paying hospitals for the extra costs of treating eight conditions stemming from preventable errors—falls, pressure ulcers, catheter-associated urinary tract and vascular infections, air embolism, blood incompatibility, mediastinitis, and objects left in the patient’s body during surgery. Unless the patient had the condition on… Read more…

  • The perfect pitch

    overcome obstacle solutionHow many times have you been frustrated by some inefficient aspect of your job? Or wondered why no one has created a shortcut through the mound of paperwork you have to wade through daily? Only nurses know the in’s and out’s of bedside nursing. We know what works and what doesn’t. We know nursing’s challenges… Read more…

  • A question of disclosure: RNs often struggle with revealing their health conditions to employers

    health healthy nurse condition struggle disclosureIt’s no secret that Americans are living longer and that deaths from heart disease, stroke, and cancer are on the downswing. It’s also true that more people are living with chronic conditions, and that the number of medications to treat them is on the upswing. Given that RNs are a subset of the American population,… Read more…

  • The importance of being unreasonable

    unreasonable reasonable important nice standupNurses, on the whole, are a darn nice group of people. After all, nurses have a reputation for being caring, self-sacrificing, nurturing, hardworking, and honest. So why don’t nurses feel more respected?I’m going to step out on a limb here and say that it’s because nice people are often considered invisible and powerless. Unfortunately, the… Read more…

  • How about a career in nursing informatics?

    informatics nursing nurse info tech science computer nursingDo you have an aptitude for information technology (IT)? Would you like to help transform health care and bridge the gap between IT and nursing practice? If so, consider a career in nursing informatics. What is nursing informatics? According to the American Nurses Association (ANA), nursing informatics “integrates nursing science, computer science, and information science… Read more…

  • Virtual learning: Nurse leaders offer strategies for choosing online programs

    online course nursing school educationTechnology has touched nearly every aspect of Americans’ lives. It’s changed how people communicate, work, and learn. And while some nurses view the explosion of online nursing programs as a benefit to students, others have some concerns about the efficacy and, in some rare cases, the legitimacy of these programs. Registered nurse (RN) leaders all… Read more…

  • Take Note – August 2007

    estrogen women woman noteGood news for younger women taking estrogen     Estrogen therapy may have cardioprotective effects for women who start taking it in their 50s. A study from the Women’s Health Initiative found these women were significantly less likely to have calcified plaque in their coronary arteries than those receiving placebos. http://content.nejm.org/cgi/content/short/356/25/2591 New drug approved for treatment of… Read more…

  • Seven reasons why oncology nurses should get certified

    oncology cancer nurse certifiedFor oncology nurses, specialty certification has become the gold standard. The Oncology Nursing Certification Corporation awards the following certifications: Oncology Certified Nurse (OCN), Certified Pediatric Oncology Nurse (CPON), Advanced Oncology Certified Nurse Practitioner (AOCNP), and Advanced Oncology Certified Clinical Nurse Specialist (AOCNS). Although eligibility criteria vary with the specific certification, all candidates must pass a… Read more…

  • From apathy to political activism

    activism nurse politicalWhen someone mentions the words politics and nursing in the same sentence, do you roll your eyes? Do you think to yourself or ask aloud, “What does this have to do with being a nurse?” For many nurses, public policy and political activism seem far removed from day-to-day practice. Yet public policy and politics shape… Read more…

  • Ready, willing, and disabled

    disable disabled disability nurseWhat’s life like for a nurse with a physical disability? Most studies on this topic have focused on nursing students with disabilities. We know little about what these students experience once they’ve graduated and attempt to practice nursing—or about the experiences of nurses who become disabled after their careers are established. Far more nurses fall… Read more…

  • Brace yourself – here comes generation Y

    gen y generationHigh patient acuity, short staffing, lack of civility, patient anxiety—these realities make for a highly stressful healthcare workplace. On top of that, a new generation has begun to enter the nursing workforce. Generation Y nurses are just starting their careers, joining the working nurses of Generation X, Baby Boomers, and Veterans. Generation Y is the… Read more…

  • Take Note – July 2007

    type 2 diabetesOn-line video-based course on emergency preparedness   The need for better coordination between governmental agencies and hospitals became apparent after 9/11 and again after Hurricane Katrina. To fill this need, Homeland Security Presidential Directive/HSPD-5 directed the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) to establish the National Incident Management System (NIMS). By the end of this fiscal year,… Read more…

  • Needlestick injuries: How to improve safety in your workplace

    needlestick injury preventionNear the end of a 12-hour shift in the emergency department, I left the triage area to help a colleague having trouble drawing blood from a patient. It was a moment that changed my life. Seconds later, my gloved index finger was bleeding. I had sustained a deep puncture wound from a needle protruding from… Read more…

  • Tomorrow’s Hope

    hope change goodTwice a year, I meet with the new graduates in my hospital and am encouraged by their expectations and their questions. They expect to engage in meaningful work that makes a difference. They also expect us to help them make the transition from student to professional. They want to know why we work 12-hour shifts… Read more…

  • Safe lifting: The assessment imperative

    If you lift or transfer patients, make "Assess first, lift later" your motto. Find out which critical patient and ergonomic factors you must evaluate before starting any patient-handling task. Read more…

  • Take Note – June 2007

    A monthly round up of clinical, practice, and career news, updates, and alerts. Read more…

  • Exploring massage therapy as a career option

    A nurse-turned-massage therapist found that hands-on interaction with massage clients reconnected her to one of the most fulfilling aspects of nursing - contact through caring, noninvasive touch. Read more…

  • Do you remember when?

    support nurseIt’s time for new nursing graduates to join your work environment. Will you be a supportive colleague of their entry into the profession? Will you go out of your way to make them feel welcome? Will you make the effort to ensure they understand your facility and your unit? Will you take the time to… Read more…

  • Celebrating our profession during National Nurses Week

    nurses weekAnnually, beginning with National Nurses Day on May 6th and concluding with International Nurses Day (also Florence Nightingale’s birthday) on May 12th, National Nurses Week marks the time when we honor the significant contributions of nurses past and present, and look ahead to the challenges facing our profession. This year, “Nursing: A Profession and a… Read more…

  • Faculty shortfall

    faculty shortfall nurseHelen O’Shea, PhD, RN, hasn’t retired completely from her role as a nurse educator, and that is very fortunate, for the number of nurse faculty is dwindling, with many saying the shortage has reached crisis proportions. O’Shea also is part of the solution. Every summer she conducts a post-master’s teaching certificate program, which she developed… Read more…

  • The Image of Nursing

    How to take control of our image. Read more…

  • Plan a career, not just a job

    Through focused soul-searching, you can create a more fulfilling and enriching career. The author tells how to brainstorm to find the nursing career that really floats your boat. Read more…

  • Energize your career with the forces of magnetism

    Is a Magnet facility for you? Explore the benefits. Read more…

  • Take Note – April 2007

    A monthly round-up of clinical, practice, and career news, updates, and alerts. Read more…

  • Passion – the ultimate motivator

    passion motivator job careerI didn’t grow up wanting to be a nurse. No one in my family had any occupational connection with healthcare. After starting college en route to becoming a medical technologist, I decided to change schools—and ended up changing careers. I’ve never regretted that decision. During my nursing diploma education, early exposure to the National Student… Read more…

  • Take Note – March 2007

    alzheimer disease brain testingPrevious hospital-room occupants may spread MRSA and VRE The risk of acquiring methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) or vancomycin-resistant enterococci (VRE) infections increases if the prior hospital-room occupant tested positive for the organism. Researchers retrospectively studied more than 10,000 patients admitted to eight intensive care units. At admission and then weekly, nares cultures were drawn for… Read more…

  • Retail-based clinics: New option for nurses

    retail clinicSomeone who feels ill has two options: He can call his physician’s office and make an appointment—maybe for the same day, maybe not. Then, the patient can drive to the physician’s office and cool his heels for at least 30 minutes beyond the “appointment” time, until he hears his name called. Next comes a quick… Read more…

  • Why must I make a service commitment?

    commitment service graduateDuring my senior year of nursing school, I tried to do everything right to prepare for my first nursing job. I thought I understood the system. I was wrong. I didn’t understand many aspects of beginning a job in a hospital: the hospital residency, the orientation requirements, and the limits on clinical areas where new… Read more…

  • Using our gold mine to compensate for our deficit

    jobs nurse nursing retire bonus mentor teachThe imbalance between supply and demand in the nursing profession is old news by now. We’ve all heard the numbers, read the analyses, and seen the inevitable trends. Even though the Bureau of Labor Statistics tells us that nursing has become one of the fastest growing occupations and despite many creative marketing campaigns, the supply… Read more…

  • Colorful antidotes for a black-and-white world

    color black white worldJanice Spillane, MS, RN, of Ridge, New York, started her career as a critical care nurse, working in an environment she describes as “largely black and white. To counteract the sterile perspective, I began wearing wonderfully colored jewelry to provide a bright spot in an otherwise monotonous environment.” Later, she started making her own jewelry… Read more…

  • Take Note – February 2007

    cpr family friend noteLow-carb diets don’t affect cardiac risk Although diets low in carbohydrates and high in fats and proteins have been popular for the last few years, some experts have warned they might increase the risk of coronary heart disease (CHD). But a recent study suggests this concern is unwarranted. A retrospective 20-year analysis of 82,802 women… Read more…

  • Learning to love your job

    job career love dislike learnThe alarm clock goes off too early, and you jump-start the day with a cup of coffee and a short stack of reasons why you hate your job. Sound familiar? Although you can’t expect to love every aspect of your job, you should expect to get some degree of fulfillment from your career. If you’re… Read more…

  • Travel nursing: Is it right for you?

    travel nurse rn benefits hire hospital agencyA number of readers have written us with questions about travel nursing. For answers to these questions, we turned to an expert in the field—Dr. Franklin Shaffer, EdD, RN, FAAN. What are the main benefits of travel nursing? Dr. Shaffer: Travel nursing offers adventure, freedom of choice, and flexibility. Travel nurses can choose their work… Read more…

  • Nursing advocates key in democratic-led Congress. Friends of nursing to assume key roles in Democratic controlled Congress.

    advocate nurse nursing democrat congress democratic friendsNursing advocates key in democratic-led Congress. By Erin McKeon Although the 110th Congress hasn’t finalized its priorities, it seems that several healthcare issues will top the agenda. House Democrats have vowed to pass legislation granting Medicare the authority to negotiate prescription drug prices directly with pharmaceutical manufacturers. The American Nurses Association (ANA) supports this authority,… Read more…

  • Take Note – January 2007

    lymes disease tickControversy over new Lyme disease guidelines The new guidelines released by the Infectious Diseases Society of America (ISDA) have run into some criticism. In fact, the International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society (ILADS) has called for a retraction of the guidelines. Here are some of the points of contention: • The ISDA says that Lyme disease… Read more…

  • Grooming our future leaders

    leader future shaping grooming moldingThe future of nursing may be in jeopardy. For almost a decade, we’ve known that when the current shortage peaks around 2020, we’ll have 1 million fewer nurses than we need. We also know that the nursing leaders of today will be retiring during this epic shortage. Perhaps as many as 55% of the current… Read more…

  • What goes into your professional portfolio & what you’ll get out of it

    portfolio professional timelineWhat is a professional portfolio? Let’s start with what it is not. It’s not a résumé or curriculum vitae (CV). Think of it this way: A résumé or CV is a summary of your skills, achievements, and professional experience. A professional portfolio is the evidence of your skills, achievements, and professional experience. Your résumé may… Read more…

  • Letters to the Editor – January 2007

    nurse white last noteCasualties of war My mother read “Nursing Care on the Battlefield” in the November issue with great interest. As an Army Nurse in World War II, she knows all too well the casualties of war. She cared for thousands of men without arms or legs, paraplegics, and those who ended up with psychiatric problems. She… Read more…

  • Blunder-free business meals: A guide to dining etiquette

    business dine dining etiquetteWhen you think of essential business skills, knowing where to put your napkin when excusing yourself from the table may not come to mind. But any nurse seeking to expand career options or search for a new job would do well to brush up on these and other rules of dining etiquette. Many business discussions… Read more…

  • Take Note – December 2006

    ibuprofen medication meds pills pillCDC recommends HIV screening for everyone New recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) call for routine human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) screening for all patients ages 13 to 64. The screening approach should be voluntary “opt out,” with testing done only with the patient’s knowledge and consent. HIV pretest counseling and separate,… Read more…

  • The power of one voice

    speaking speak public fear phobia glossophobiaDizziness, profuse sweating, a gnawing sensation in the pit of your stomach. Are these symptoms of the latest virus? No—they’re classic indications of glossophobia, or fear of public speaking. Few things conjure up more anxiety than the prospect of speaking in front of an audience. But getting past your fear to give a presentation can… Read more…

  • Letters to the Editor – December 2006

    work injured nurse noteWhere’s the support for work-injured nurses? Congratulations on your premier issue. The article “Cultivating personal courage” is a wonderful encouragement for working nurses. How­-ever, it’s missing a voice for nurses who are victims of the healthcare system. Many nurses who become disabled due to manual patient lifting are fired. These nurses are isolated, on the… Read more…

  • Gifts that keep on giving

    pay foward gift givingDecember turns our hearts and minds to the holiday season. We juggle work time and family demands to prepare for holiday celebrations. We reflect on the diversity of our cultural and religious traditions, preparing for our own rituals and gatherings. Almost universal in our culture is the tradition of gift-giving. As nurses, though, we give… Read more…

  • Taking the pain out of patient handling

    FOR DECADES, nurses and other healthcare providers have suffered debilitating musculoskeletal injuries when lifting, transferring, and repositioning patients manually. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employees in nursing and personal care facilities suffer more than 200,000 patient-handling injuries yearly, and workers’ compensation costs related to such injuries amount to almost $1 billion yearly.… Read more…

  • Do you want to be a preceptor?

    preceptor nurse goodPRECEPTORS MAKE ALL the difference. Without the right preceptor, the transition from classroom to patient’s room can be difficult, but a preceptor who demonstrates how to turn classroom theory into skilled clinical practice can put a new nurse on the path to clinical excellence. What a preceptor needs What does it take to be a… Read more…

  • Take Note – November 2006

    breast feeding breastfeeding babyAmerican Diabetes Association releases food guidelines for specific medical categories “When you’re talking about diabetes, there is no ‘one size fits all’ diet,” said Ann Albright, PhD, RD, President-Elect, Health Care & Education, American Diabetes Association (ADA). And the new ADA guidelines make that clear by providing specific advice on nutrition, based on a person’s… Read more…

  • How to survive a bully

    bully survive target blame confront support powerHave you run into a bully at work? Unfortunately, chances are good that you have. Bullying has become all too common in nursing. In my first nursing position, I was the target of a nurse with years of nursing experience. Her almost daily attacks were extremely distressing and made me question my own ability to perform… Read more…

  • Reflections on nursing in Vietnam

    vietnam nurse reflectionsMary Jo Rice-Mahoney, RN, MSN, Colonel U.S. Army, Retired, knows what it’s like to practice nursing in a war zone. She began her military career during her junior year of nursing school in 1968, when she joined the Army Student Nurse Program at St. Joseph’s College in Emmitsburg, Maryland. Six months before graduation, she was… Read more…

  • How do you look?

    outfit nurse clothes attire workRecently, I rushed to the emergency department (ED) at my local hospital to meet a relative who’d been taken there by ambulance. When I arrived, in my desperation I fled for assistance to a uniformed police officer standing nearby. Why did I choose the police officer?  Because as I looked around the ED, I couldn’t… Read more…

  • Take Note – October 2006

    flu shot kids noteCDC recommends annual flu shots for children ages 2 to 4 For the first time, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is endorsing yearly flu shots for healthy children ages 2 to 4, as well as their household contacts and out-of-home caregivers.  Since 2004, the CDC has recommended flu shots for children ages… Read more…

  • Nursing – today and beyond

    future nursing presentNursing is in the midst of revolutionary changes. How are these changes affecting the profession today—and how are they likely to affect it in the future? For the premier issue of American Nurse Today, we decided to examine current trends in nursing and healthcare, and predict future developments that could influence nursing in years to… Read more…

  • Introducing the new voice of nurses

    welcome issue first introduce ant american nurse todayWelcome to the premier issue of American Nurse Today—the official journal of the American Nurses Association (ANA) and the new voice for today’s nurses in all specialties and practice settings. American Nurse Today presents practical information for nurses and provides a forum for examining critical issues. Each month, we’ll offer evidence-based, peer-reviewed articles on important… Read more…

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