AACN News—October 2003—Certification

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Vol. 20, No. 10, OCTOBER 2003


CCRNs Have Earned the Right to Use and Display Credential
Organizations Can Show Commitment to Providing Quality Care


Nurses who successfully meet the criteria for CCRN certification have earned the right to use and professionally display the credential on their name badges and following their signatures on official records, according to a position paper recently released by AACN and AACN Certification Corporation.

Further, such acknowledgment of the credential is a meaningful way for organizations to demonstrate support for the value of certification and a commitment to ensuring the delivery of competent, high-quality healthcare. The ability to prominently and legibly display credentials also demonstrates recognition of the healthcare providers' obligation to the consumers' rights to be informed about those who are responsible for their care.

Pointing to the fact that certification is a voluntary process, the position statement notes that specialty certification reflects a nurse's commitment to career development and dedication to patient care.

'Support for continuing education and certification has been found to be a driver of nurses' job satisfaction and has been identified as essential elements in recruitment and retention,' the statement continues 'Display of the credential provides validation that the nurse has demonstrated experience, knowledge and skills in the specialty of critical care.

'Today's critically ill patients require heightened vigilance and extraordinarily intricate care,' the statement reads. 'As skilled and responsible health professionals, the 403,000 critical care nurses in the United States must acquire the specialized knowledge and skills needed to provide this care and demonstrate their competence to the public, their employers and their profession. Certification provides validation of such specialized knowledge and skills.'

The full position paper is available online.

CCRNs Stay Connected Through Alumnus Status

AACN Certification Corporation began offering the Alumnus CCRN status in response to CCRN-certified nurses who, though they have left direct bedside critical care, want to remain connected with the credential.

E. Faye Daly, RN, BS, AD, of Sedro Woolley, Wash., is just one of those nurses who have been granted Alumnus status. Following are her comments about how much the opportunity to be given this special standing meant to her:

Because of a hand injury, I am not able to work at the bedside as a caregiver. Unable to meet the clinical requirements to renew my CCRN, I applied for Alumnus CCRN status.

Recently, I received confirmation of acceptance. It feels wonderful to me! As my renewal due date approached, it was very hard for me to think of giving up CCRN certification.

Being able to remain connected through Alumnus CCRN standing is such a healing balm for my heavy heart from not being able to do direct bedside care after some 30 years of clinical practice. I am working at keeping myself positive by acknowledging that I am making a difference in patient care, just in a different position.

Thanks to you all, my fellow professionals, for initiating a standing for us 'ol' health warriors' alias critical care RNs!

When written, the Alumnus CCRN designation may be used on a resume or below a person's name and credentials on a business card. However, the designation may not be used after a signature or on a name badge.

To be eligible for Alumnus CCRN status, an applicant must have been CCRN certified and no longer working at the bedside of acutely or critically ill patients. CERPs are not required. Alumnus CCRNs receive a certificate, lapel pin and monthly issues of AACN News.

The Alumnus CCRN application is available by calling (800) 899-2226 or visiting the AACN Certification Corporation Web site. The fee is $75 for AACN members and $90 for others.


In the Circle
Jersey Shoreline Chapter Increases Certification Numbers

Editor's note: The Chapter CCRN Certification Drive Award recognizes chapters that demonstrate the value of CCRN certification by increasing the number of CCRNs in their chapters during the year. Following are excerpts from the exemplar submitted by the Jersey Shoreline Chapter, the recipient of this award for 2003. The chapter received five complimentary tickets to and was recognized at the Certification Luncheon during NTI 2003 in San Antonio, Texas.

Jersey Shoreline Chapter
Neptune, N.J.
The Jersey Shoreline Chapter was almost defunct when a small but determined group of nurses envisioned a multifacility nursing group with a concentrated focus-providing updated critical care nursing educational programs. These nurses banded together and decided to provide bimonthly seminars, as well as a CCRN review. The attendance grew; the interest mounted; and the chapter was reborn! The numbers of chapter members increased from 54 to 102, and nationally certified members, specifically CCRNs, doubled from 37 to 74.

The chapter accepted the award on behalf of not only chapter members, but also all the critical care nurses in the Central New Jersey area who are now enriched by the educational programs and community projects the chapter continues to provide.


Renewing Your CCRN Online Fast and Easy

Renewing your CCRN online is faster and easier than mailing or faxing a paper application. You receive your new card and certificate in four to six weeks with online renewal, half the time it takes with the paper process. If you are an active CCRN who is due to renew within the next four months and plan to renew by CERPs, visit the AACN Certification Corporation Web site at www.certcorp.org > CCRN.

For the Record

Elaine M. Buesgens, RN, BS, CCRN, has been CCRN certified since 1979. Her name was omitted from a list of CCRNs celebrating 20 consecutive years of certification, which appeared in AACN News in 2001.

Kelley E. Hubbard, RN, BSN, MS, MBA, CCRN, CRNA, has maintained her CCRN certification for 20 years. Her credentials were incomplete in a list of CCRNs celebrating 20 consecutive years of certification, which appeared in the August 2003 issue of AACN News.
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