Meet the New AACN Certification
Corporation Leadership Team
The AACN Certification Corporation is
poised for a change in leadership July 1 as Jan Foster, RN, MSN, PhD, CCRN,
succeeds Suzanne S. Prevost, RN, PhD, as chair of the corporation's Board of
Taking office with Foster are Judy Verger,
RN, MSN, CCRN, CRNP, chair-elect, and Beth Martin, RN, MSN, CCNS, CNRN, and
Kevin D. Reed, RN, MSN, CNA, BC, both directors. Their appointments by the AACN
Board of Directors followed a nominating process in which representatives of
AACN Certification Corporation screened, evaluated and interviewed prospective
candidates for the national leadership positions.
Returning to the board are
Secretary-Treasurer Thomas L. Hickey, Mindy A. Hecker and Michael W. Day, RN,
MSN, CCRN. Hickey and Hecker both represent consumer interests on the board. In
addition to Prevost, Roberta Kaplow, RN, PhD, CCNS, CCRN, is completing her term
on the board.
Two representatives of the AACN Board of
Directors will also be appointed to the AACN Certification Corporation Board of
Following is information about Foster and
the other newly appointed members of the AACN Certification Corporation Board of
Foster is assistant professor for adult
health and clinical nurse specialist in adult health at Texas Woman's
University, Houston. She is also director of research at Memorial Hermann
Hospital, Houston, and president of Nursing Inquiry & Intervention, Inc., a
healthcare consulting firm.
Foster is a member of AACN and a member and
past president of the Houston Gulf Coast Chapter of AACN. She has served as an
AACN national volunteer as a member of the former Group of 100 and of the NTI
Program Task Force, and as a regional chapter consultant. She was
secretary-treasurer of the AACN Certification Corporation Board from 1999 to
2001, returning last year as chair-elect.
Foster graduated magna cum laude with a
bachelor of science in nursing degree from the University of Michigan, Ann
Arbor, and earned her master of science in nursing degree with honors from the
University of Texas, Houston, and her doctor of philosophy degree with honors
from the University of Texas, Austin.
Verger is research project manager and a
doctoral candidate in the School of Nursing at the University of Pennsylvania
and an advanced practice nurse at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.
She has been an active AACN volunteer,
having served on the Research Review Panel, NTI Work Group, Advanced Practice
Work Group, AACN Online Continuing Education Item Writer and Pediatric Advisory
She is a member of the Southeastern
Pennsylvania Chapter of AACN.
Martin is the clinical nurse specialist in
the acute-critical care division at Carolinas Medical Center, Charlotte, N.C.
As a member of AACN and active volunteer,
Martin has served in a variety of capacities, including as a Special Interest
Consultant and as a member of the AACN Board Advisory Team, Program Advisory
Panel, CE Article Review Panel, Publishing Work Group, Education Advisory Team,
Member Greeter, Adult CCRN Item Writer Service, Advanced Practice Advisory Team,
Practice Standards Task Force, Faculty Advisory Team, Creative Solutions and
Research Abstracts Review Panel and NTI Abstracts Review Panel and as chair of
the Education Work Group.
She is a member of the Piedmont Carolinas
Chapter of AACN and a past member of the Gulfcoast Chapter of AACN.
She earned her bachelor of science in
nursing degree from Spalding University, Louisville, Ky., and her master of
science in nursing in adult health from the University of South Florida, Tampa.
She is currently pursuing an acute care nurse practitioner postmaster's
certificate at the University of South Carolina.
Reed is director of clinical operations in
neuroscience and critical care at Clarian Health Partners, Methodist Hospital,
He is also adjunct faculty at the Indiana
University School of Nursing, Department of Environments for Health,
Reed earned his bachelor of science in
nursing degree from Ball State University, Muncie, Ind., and his master of
science degree in nursing administration from Indiana University, where he is
currently pursuing his doctorate in nursing.
He has been a member of AACN since 1987 and
is a CCRN alumnus. He served on the AACN Board Advisory Team and is a past
recipient of the AACN Excellence in Leadership Award, part of AACN's Circle of
Excellence recognition program.
In addition, Reed has been involved in a
partnership with AACN to develop a Professional Nursing Practice Model based on
the Synergy Model and was instrumental in developing Clarian Health Partners'
sponsorship of the Certification Oasis at the NTI.
Positive Thoughts Provide the Power
to Overcome Fear
The power of positive thinking was
validated during the past year as AACN President Dorrie Fontaine, RN, DNSc, FAAN,
pledged to concentrate good thoughts for certification candidates who notified
her of their exam dates.
As part of her President's Address at NTI
2004 in Orlando, Fla., Fontaine noted that more than 40,000 critical care nurses
are CCRN- and CCNS-certified and that more than 400 nurses took the first PCCN
exam for progressive care nurses during the NTI. Although 40,000 plus is a large
number, she said, it represents just 10% of critical care nurses.
Because certification's main purpose is to
promote and enhance consumer health and safety, Fontaine said she decided to
focus some of her energy on it during her presidential year.
She also said she realized that many nurses
don't seek certification because they're afraid of failing.
"Because fear is such a powerful
demotivator and a personal emotion, it demands a personal connection," she
explained. "So I adapted a simple technique developed for cancer patients by Dr.
Rachel Remen to encourage possibility and make caring visible.
"I invited nurses to send me their exam
date and promised I'd think of them that day and send good thoughts to them."
Almost every time, it worked, Fontaine
said. Here's what one of her "regular customers," Stephanie Sanderson, RN, BSN,
CCRN, a manager at the University of New Mexico Medical Center, Albuquerque,
"We recently celebrated two more new CCRNs
in our medical ICU. Can you believe we now have 19 CCRNs in our unit?"
Fontaine said her "good thoughts" offer
"You could do this for someone, too," she
suggested. "Think of the possibility and the power!"
Hundreds Take Exams at NTI
Approximately 650 critical care nurses took
the new PCCN exam and newly revised adult, pediatric and neonatal CCRN exams at
the NTI in May in Orlando, Fla.
The CCRN exams are now in a blackout
period. Computer-based testing for the new CCRN exams will resume July 12.
Computer-based testing for the new PCCN exams for progressive care nurses is
scheduled to be available in late August.
The response to the PCCN exam exceeded
expectations, with more than 400 examinees from 37 states. Additional
information about the new progressive care certification is available online.
CCRN Renewals Subject to Random
CERP logs do not need to be turned in at
the time of renewal. However, all renewals are subject to random audits, and
candidates must maintain supporting documentation for three years following
As part of its mission to protect patients
and the public, AACN Certification Corporation has audited 679 CCRN renewal
candidates since August 2003. Of those, 29 candidates have been sent revocation
letters as a result of the renewal audits. Employers are notified of revocation.
In the last fiscal year, 38% of the
renewals were completed online. It's fast and easy, so take advantage of online
Board Addresses Eligibility for New
The AACN Certification Corporation Board of
Directors has determined that the eligibility requirements for subspecialty
certification exams now under development will be comparable to the current CCRN,
CCNS and PCCN exams. The corporation plans to launch the certification exams in
cardiovascular surgery and in medical cardiology nursing in 2005.
Subspecialty certification eligibility will
require a current, unrestricted RN or APRN license in the United States or its
territories, and 1,750 hours in care of the acutely or critically ill patient
within the two years preceding the date of application, with 875 of those hours
in the most recent year preceding the application. In addition, certificants
will be required to hold a current nationally accredited (NCCA or ABNS) nursing
Recertification of the subspecialty
certifications will also have comparable requirements to the other certification
The board also determined that, with
respect to the CCRN examination or renewal, clinical practice hours outside the
United States must take place in a U.S.-based facility or in a facility
determined by verifiable evidence to be comparable to the U.S. standard of acute
and critical care nursing practice.
Self-Assessment Exam Under Revision
The online Adult CCRN Self-Assessment Exam
is unavailable while revisions to match the current test specifications are
made. The revised SAE is scheduled to be available in the fall.
AACN Certification Corporation appreciates
the volunteers who were selected to work on the revision of the SAE. They are
Debbie Becker, RN, MS, MS, APRN, CRNP, NP, Michael Day, RN, MSN, CCRN, Roberta
Kaplow, RN, PhD, CCNS, CCRN, Marthe J. Moseley, RN, PhD, CCRN, CCNS, Katie
Schatz, RN, MS, MSN, APRN, NP, and Kathleen M. Stacy, RN, CNS, MS, CCRN.