AACN News—December 2003—Chapters

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Vol. 20, No. 12, DECEMBER 2003


Chapter Recruitment Continues to Build

Florida's Volusia Flagler Chapter increased its lead in AACN's Critical Links membership drive by recruiting five more new members during October to bring its total recruitment figure to 31 since the campaign began May 1. With the combined efforts of chapters and individuals, the overall campaign total stood at 2,204 new members at the halfway point.

The chapters recruiting the most new members and reporting the largest percentage increase when the campaign ends March 31 will each receive a $250 gift certificate toward the purchase of AACN resources. In addition, participating chapters are entered into a prize drawing each month for one complimentary NTI registration. The winner for October was the Mobile Bay Area Chapter.

Following are all chapters participating in the campaign through October:
Abilene Area Chapter, Atlanta Area Chapter, Bluegrass Chapter, Brooklyn Chapter, Broward County Chapter, Capital District Chapter, Capital Region Chapter, Central Arkansas Chapter, Central Minnesota Area Chapter, Central Ohio Chapter, Central Pennsylvania Chapter, Central Savannah River Chapter, Chattahoochee Valley Chapter, Chattanooga - Scenic City Chapter, Chesapeake Bay Chapter, Coastal Chapter, DelMarVa Chapter, East Carolina Chapter, Eastern Iowa Chapter, Fairbanks North Star Chapter, First Coast Chapter, Greater Akron Area Chapter, Greater Austin Area Chapter, Greater Birmingham Chapter, Greater Boston Chapter, Greater Chicago Area Chapter, Greater Cincinnati Chapter, Greater East Texas Chapter, Greater Evansville Chapter, Greater Joliet Area Chapter, Greater Long Beach Orange County Chapter, Greater Miami Area Chapter, Greater Milwaukee Area Chapter, Greater Portland Chapter, Greater Reading Chapter, Greater Richmond Area Chapter, Greater Rochester Finger Lakes Chapter, Greater Twin Cities Area Chapter, Greater Washington Area Chapter, Greater Wichita Area Chapter, Gulf Coast Magnolia Chapter, Hangzhou China Chapter, Head of the Lakes Chapter, Heart of the Piedmont Chapter, Heartland Chapter, Houston Gulf Coast Chapter, Houston Texas Chapter, Indiana Hoosier South Central Chapter, Indianhead Chapter, Inland Empire Chapter, Lake Champlain Chapter, Lake Erie Chapter, Lehigh Valley Chapter, Los Angeles Chapter, Metropolitan Orlando Chapter, Mid-Cumberland Chapter, Minot Roughrider Chapter, Mobile Bay Area Chapter, Montana Big Sky Chapter, Mt. Rainier Chapter, North Central Florida Chapter, Northeast Indiana Chapter, Northern Illinois Chapter, Northwest Georgia Chapter, Northwest Washington Evergreen Chapter, Ocean State Chapter, Old Salem Chapter, Pacific Crest Regional Chapter, Palm Beach County Chapter, Palmetto Chapter, Peninsula Chapter, Piedmont Carolinas Chapter, Puget Sound Chapter, San Diego Area Chapter, San Fernando Valley Chapter, San Francisco Chapter, Santa Barbara County Chapter, Siouxland Chapter, Smoky Hill Chapter, Smoky Mountain Chapter, South Central Connecticut Chapter, South Central Wisconsin Chapter, Southeast Michigan Chapter, Southeastern Pennsylvania Chapter, Southern Arizona Chapter, Southern Maine Chapter, Spokane Chapter, Suburban Cook County Chapter, Tennessee Valley Chapter, Three Rivers Chapter, Triangle Chapter, Vermont Green Mountain Chapter, Volusia Flagler Chapter, Washtenaw County Chapter, West Michigan Chapter, Western Connecticut Chapter, White River Chapter.

In the Circle: Award Cites Outstanding Communications Programs

Part of the AACN Circle of Excellence recognition program, the Outstanding Chapter Communication System Award spotlights chapters that exemplify effective communication and promote AACN's messages in the chapter or in the community. Following are excerpts from exemplars submitted in connection with this award for 2003.


Greater Akron Area Chapter
Akron, Ohio
The dedicated members of the Greater Akron Area Chapter of AACN are the heart and soul of communication. The chapter has effectively used a variety of communication techniques�oral, written, printed and digital�to encourage and promote participation and to assist in the process of lifelong learning. Like the "ripple effect," the chapter's messages have stirred up small waves within the local critical care nursing community and have had a profound impact on recruitment, educational programming and community service.

As a new chapter, much was accomplished in less than a year. Our growth can largely be attributed to the use of effective and varied forms of communication. Whether on the Web, through a needs assessment, utilizing facility liaisons, creating visual display boards, networking with other chapters, collaborating with other organizations and institutions, or providing health education on the bus, the GAAC has maintained outstanding communication with its members and the community.
Our voice was heard in a positive manner and has produced a ripple effect for the sake of our patients and the nursing profession.

By loudly proclaiming in a bold voice who we are and what we do, the Greater Akron Area Chapter communicates its commitment to providing the highest quality resources to maximize nurses' contributions to caring and improving the healthcare of critically ill patients and their families. Although our activities may only be like a pebble dropped into the water, which makes a splash and is gone, there are many ripples circling on and on.

Houston Gulf Coast Chapter
Houston, Texas
Based on the concept that personal relationships modeled by the leadership stimulate individuals to take ownership in their organizations, the Circle of Influence Program provides a structure for the Houston Gulf Coast Chapter to promote a practice of inclusivity.

Each chapter member already has a circle of influence in the group of people he or she interacts with often enough to impact their professional behavior. Providing members with information creates a networking system that promotes our chapter throughout Houston's professional healthcare community.

The program encourages personal interaction and support among critical care nurses, decreasing the sense of isolation and frustration with "the system" that often plagues our specialty. It also creates a welcoming environment for new members, encouraging them to apply their talents and develop into nursing leaders.

The president-elect and Membership Committee specifically inform new members about the program. A welcome e-packet describing the program objectives, responsibilities and benefits of becoming a Circle Leader, board member demographics, the chapter Web site link and a Circle Note is sent out within a week of initial contact. Circle Notes contain pertinent information on upcoming chapter meetings, educational programs, and committee activities, as well as notices of individual chapter members' professional achievements, and educational offerings sponsored by other nursing organizations that network with HGCC.

Circle Leaders promote the chapter! Monthly meeting attendance has more than doubled, with attendance by more than 70 RNs common. With more than 200 individuals listed on the Circle Leader database, the goal of involving 75% of the chapter membership in an active networking system has been surpassed.


Mock One Up for Critical Care Nursing

Critical care nurse Sandy Stuart performs a mock code as (from left) Diane Crichton, Jane Kwilecki and Kim Martin stand by during a lifestyles festival attended by more than 18,000 people in the Daytona Beach, Fla., area. With the support of sponsors and donations by equipment vendors, the Volusia-Flagler Chapter of AACN set up this ICU demonstration, complete with specialty bed, ventilator, ICP monitor, defibrillator, heart monitor, IV Pumps, VAC, tube feeding and an AED. Chapter members volunteered to staff the booth and teach the public what critical care nurses do.

Save the Date
Attention chapter leaders! The annual Chapter Leadership Development Workshop is scheduled for Sunday, May 17, in connection with NTI 2004 in Orlando, Fla. Watch for details, but in the meantime save the date.

What's on Tap

Caribbean
The South Bay Chapter in San Jose, Calif., is sponsoring an Eastern Caribbean Cruise Jan. 4 through 11. The speaker is Maureen Harvey. CE credits are available in connection with this program. For more information, contact Kay Burtress at (800) 347-6136; e-mail, , or Liana Hain at (831) 251-2555; e-mail, .

Indiana
The Greater Evansville Chapter will present a program titled "Advanced Practice Nursing Experiences" on Jan. 15 at Jasper Memorial Hospital. For more information or to register, contact Kathy Burton at (800) 852-7279.

New York
The Brooklyn Chapter will present a program titled "Enhanced External Counterpulsation-EECP" on Dec. 18 at the Brookdale University Hospital and Medical Center. For more information, contact .

Pennsylvania
The Greater Reading Chapter will present a program titled "LVAD" on Jan. 14. For more information, e-mail Karen Willard at .

Texas
The Abilene Area Chapter will present a program titled "CCRN Review and New Concepts" on Dec. 15 and 16 at Hendrick Medical Center. For more information, contact Paulita Narag at (325) 670-2735; e-mail, .

Is your chapter planning a program or special event? Submit your information online; e-mail, .