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President's Message

Three Health Care Spheres, One Role

Reed, Sean M. PhD, APN, ACNS-BC, ACHPN

Author Information
doi: 10.1097/NUR.0000000000000523
  • Free

My fellow colleagues:

I am honored to serve as President of the only national organization specifically supporting clinical nurse specialists (CNSs). For 25 years, the National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists (NACNS) has focused on promoting CNSs' unique healthcare expertise and value. Now more than ever, healthcare needs the CNS!

Clinical nurse specialists are the most versatile advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) because we (a) are educated at the master's or doctoral level and (b) impact 3 spheres of healthcare: nurses and nursing, patient care, and organizations and systems.1 No other APRN can say this. And our education, training, and scope position us perfectly to address new healthcare challenges. Here are a couple of challenges that come immediately to mind:

  • Infectious disease and virology. Clinical nurse specialists are the APRNs deployed at the frontlines to reduce the spread of infectious disease. Clinical nurse specialists are currently working to control COVID-19 in the acute care setting (ie, impacting the spheres of nurses and nursing, patient care, and organizations and systems). I would like to thank all of those CNSs actively engaged in limiting the global spread of this virus.
  • Women's Health. In 2018, 9 maternal mortality review committees reported that approximately 700 women across the United States die each year as a result of pregnancy or pregnancy-related complications.2 Of these pregnancy-related deaths, 60% are preventable—the most common contributors to death are patient/family factors (eg, lack of education on warning signs), misdiagnoses and ineffective treatments, and system-of-care factors.2 Again, CNSs uniquely possess the skill set to positively impact all 3 spheres in this healthcare challenge; moreover, CNSs can practice in acute, postacute, and ambulatory settings. Did you know that, in 2014, the Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses and NACNS jointly published the Women's Health Clinical Nurse Specialist Competencies.3 I'm thinking the 48 Women's Health CNSs that registered for their National Provider Identifier4 from 2014 to 2019 know about the competencies.

We have the knowledge and ability to tackle these 2 examples of healthcare challenges (and nearly all other healthcare-related challenges, too) because we impact nurses and nursing, patient care, and organizations and systems. As new, complex healthcare problems continue to emerge, the CNS will become ever more prominent and essential. Even though our role will expand organically, it is also important for all of us as CNSs to champion our unique value proposition.

Demonstrating the CNS value proposition means using the value equation: Value = Quality + Safety + Service / Cost or resources. All of us should be collecting data and reporting our impact on the 3 spheres through metrics that capture the variables in the value equation. Subsequently, disseminating our metrics through dashboards, grand rounds, and annual reviews increases awareness of our specific healthcare contribution. In addition, we need to publish our outcomes in peer-reviewed journals; publication reaches “the outside world” and tells our story, details our accomplishments, and codifies our value as CNSs.

I am very excited to be working this year with the NACNS Board of Directors, Committee Chairs, and microvolunteering service providers. As your President, I will work with the Board of Directors to develop/hone strategies and tactics that support our mission of advancing CNSs and their contributions to healthcare. That said, I am also calling out to all NACNS rank-and-file members: please consider joining a committee or microvolunteering. Without these kinds of participation, our organization cannot exist as it does today, and our mission will go unfulfilled. Please keep a lookout for upcoming opportunities to serve, and on my behalf and that of the Board of Directors, thank you for your ongoing support: together, we will guarantee the resurgence of the CNS across the entire healthcare system!



The mission of NACNS is to advance the unique expertise and value the CNS contributes to healthcare. The NACNS announces the Board of Directors for 2020–2021:

  • President: Sean M. Reed, PhD, APN, ACNS-BC, ACHPN, University of Colorado, Anschutz Medical Campus, College of Nursing
  • President-elect: Jan Powers, PhD, RN, CCRN, CCNS, NE-BC, FCCM, Parkview Regional Systems and Indiana University School of Nursing
  • Immediate Past President: Tracy Chamblee, PhD, APRN, PCNS-BC, CPHQ, CPPS, Children's Health Dallas, Texas
  • Secretary/Treasurer: Carrie Doyle DNP, APRN, ACNS- BC, Providence Alaska Medical Center
  • Director: Judy Dusek, DNP, MEd, APRN-CNS, CMSRN, ACNS-BC, Ascension Via Christi Hospitals Wichita, Inc
  • Director: Kimberly W. Elgin, DNP, RN, ACNS-BC, PCCN, CMSRN, University of Virginia Health System and University of Virginia
  • Director: Erica A. Fischer, DNP, CNS, CBCN, AOCNS, Memorial Sloan-Kettering
  • Director: Mary Beth Modic, DNP, APRN, CNS, CDE, FAAN, Cleveland Clinic and Case Western Reserve University, Frances, Payne Bolton, School of Nursing
  • Director: Mitzi Saunders, PhD, APRN, CNS-C, University of Detroit Mercy
  • Director: Phyllis Whitehead, PhD, APRN, ACHPN, RN-BC, Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital, and Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine
  • Ex-officio Janet S. Fulton, PhD, RN, ACNS-BC, FAAN, Indiana University, School of Nursing


This year NACNS is proud to announce the following outstanding recipients:

Name: Kathy M. Williams, MSN, RN-BC, APRN, AHCNS-BC

Award: CNS of the Year

Name: Erica A. Fischer-Cartlidge, DNP, CNS, CBCN, AOCNS

Award: CNS EBP/QI Award

Name: Gayle M. Timmerman, PhD, RN, CNS, FNP, FAAN

Award: CNS Educator of the Year

Name: Susan B. Fowler, PhD, RN, CNRN, FAHA

Award: Sue B. Davidson Service Award

Name: Susan Dresser, PhD, RN APRN-CNS, CCRN, FCNS

Award: Brenda Lyon Leadership Award

Name: Anne E. Hysong, MSN, APRN, CCNS, ACNS-BC, FCNS

Award: President's Award


Did you know that all NACNS webinars are recorded and can be accessed for Continuing Education (CE) hours? If you were unable to attend the live webinar, there is still time to watch the recording and gain CE! Webinars are free to members of NACNS and include pharmacology and professional development CE hours. Since July 1, 2019, NACNS has provided 11 webinars, each with accredited CE hours. The NACNS plans to expand the webinar series in the very near future based on membership feedback, so keep watching for more updates as we enhance our webinar series.


The Clinical Nurse Specialist Institute is pleased to announce the 2020 Class of Clinical Nurse Specialist Institute Fellows. This is a highly prestigious honor and awarded only to those members of the NACNS who epitomize the excellence of CNS as leaders of the nursing profession, staunch advocates for patients and families, and forerunners of innovations to improve the health of populations. The 2020 Class of Fellows:

  • Kathy A. Baker, PhD, APRN, ACNS-BC, FAAN
  • Associate Professor and Director, Nursing Research & Scholarship Texas Christian University
  • Kathleen M. Baldwin, PhD, RN, ACNS-BC, PGPCNP-BC, FAAN
  • Nurse Scientist, Texas Health Resources
  • Laura M. Dechant, DNP, APRN, CNS, CCRN, RN-BC
  • Clinical Nurse Specialist, Christiana Care Health System
  • Carol L. Delville, PhD, APRN, ACNS-BC
  • Assistant Professor of Clinical Nursing, The University of Texas at Austin
  • Justin DiLibero, DNP, APRN-CNS, CCNS, ACCNS-AG, CCRN-K
  • Assistant Professor and Director, DNP Program, Rhode Island College
  • Jennifer Dorman, MS, RN, ACNS-BC, CCRN
  • Clinical Nurse Specialist, Jersey Shore Medical Center
  • Paula Halcomb, DNP, APRN, ACNS-BC, TCRN
  • Clinical Nurse Specialist, University of Kentucky Health Care
  • Linda Hoke, PhD, RN, AGCNS-BC, CCNS, CCRN, WCC
  • Clinical Nurse Specialist, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania
  • Laura Kitch, MSN, APRN, ACNS-BC
  • Clinical Nurse Specialist, Essentia Health
  • Carol S. Manchester, MSN, APRN, ACNS-BC, BC-ADM, CDE
  • Diabetes Clinical Nurse Specialist, University of Minnesota Medical Center
  • Jayne K. McGrath, MS, RN, CCRN, CEN, CNS-BC
  • Clinical Nurse Specialist, University of Wisconsin Hospital & Clinics
  • Perianesthesia Clinical Nurse Specialist, Michigan Medicine–University of Michigan
  • Suzanne Purvis, DNP, RN, GCNS-BC
  • Clinical Nurse Specialist, Beaumont Health System
  • Barbara Quinn, MSN, RN, ACNS-BC
  • Director, Professional Practice & Nursing Excellence Sutter Health
  • Angela R. Roberson, MNSc, APRN, PCNS-BC
  • Pediatric Clinical Nurse Specialist, Arkansas Children's Hospital
  • Kathleen M. Stacy, PhD, APRN-CNS, CCNS
  • Clinical Professor & CNS Program Coordinator, University of San Diego
  • Jerithea Tidwell, PhD, RN, PCNS-BC, PNP-BC
  • NICU Clinical Nurse Specialist, Children's Health Dallas

The NACNS Board is excited to announce the transition of the CNS Listserv to a member-only benefit. As NACNS continues to represent the needs of the CNS, it needs to place a strong focus on serving active members who are invested in the future of the CNS. The NACNS Board of Directors evaluated all member benefits and chose to support benefits that directly bring value to our members. “We are working to identify specific needs and bring new features to the Listserv to make the platform even more meaningful and rich for NACNS members,” said Sean M. Reed, PhD, APN, ACNS-BC, ACHPN, President, NACNS. Be on the lookout for announcements about new features and upgrades to the Listserv.



If you have not seen it yet, NACNS has a new Career Center! We have parted with ymcareers to bring new features including career resources, events, and résumé review for our members. In addition, posting a new job for employers has never been easier. Go to the NACNS website to see features and find new CNS careers:


We heard members requesting more swag items offered by NACNS, and we listened! We have collaborated with CafePress to provide a large variety of items from t-shirts to pens for members wanting to promote NACNS. Take a look at our new store at the NACNS website:


1. National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists. Statement on Clinical Nurse Specialist Practice and Education. 3rd ed. Reston, VA: NACNS; 2019.
2. Report from nine maternal morality review committees. In: Building U.S. Capacity to Review and Prevent Maternal Deaths. 2018:
3. Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN), National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists (NACNS). In: Women's Health Clinical Nurse Specialist Competencies. 2014.
4. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). In: National Plan and Provider Enumeration System: National Provider Identifier Registry.
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