Tracy Urges Nurses to Be ‘Powered by Insight’
Mary Fran Tracy, RN, PhD, CCNS, CCRN, FAAN, became the 37th president of AACN on July 1. She accepted the reins of leadership from outgoing President Debbie Brinker, RN, MSN, CCRN, CCNS.
Theme Unveiled at NTI; New Board Members Announced
In a speech on the final day of AACN’s National Teaching Institute & Critical Care Exposition in May in Anaheim, Calif., Tracy introduced her theme, “Powered by Insight,” and outlined her vision for the year. She asked NTI participants to join her in discovering new insights that will positively impact their work environments.
“The concept of insight isn’t foreign to us. What might be unfamiliar is the notion of looking for insights,” she asserted. “So I’m challenging us to intentionally draw out insights and not leave them to chance. See something a new way and you’ll never see it the old way again.” (See President’s Note, Opinions.)
On the Team
Newly elected board members were also announced at NTI during the AACN Annual Meeting and Forum. They are President-elect M. Dave Hanson, RN, MSN, CCRN, CNS, and Directors Marian Altman, RN, MS, CCRN, ANP, Julie Miller, RN, BSN, CCRN, Kristine Peterson, RN, MS, CCNS, CCRN and Mary Stahl, RN, MSN, APRN, BC, CCNS, CCRN. They join returning board members Beth Hammer, RN, MSN, APRN-BC, Paula Lusardi, RN, PhD, CCRN, CCNS, Patricia Gonce Morton, RN, PhD, ACNP, FAAN, Janice M. Wojcik, RN, MS, CCRN, APRN, BC, Denise Buonocore, RN, MSN, CCRN, APRN-BC, Roberta Kaplow, RN, PhD, CCNS, CCRN, and Jodi Mullen, RN, BC, MS, CCNS, CCRN. Mullen will serve as secretary of the board, and Buonocore as treasurer.
Completing their terms on the board were John Dixon, RN, MSN, CNA, BC, Nancy Blake, RN, MN, CCRN, CNAA, Mary Holtschneider, RN, BSN, BC, MPA, NREMT-P, and Caryl Goodyear-Bruch, RN, PhD.
Following is information about the new members of the AACN leadership team:
Mary Fran Tracy
Tracy is a critical care clinical nurse specialist at the University of Minnesota Medical Center, Fairview in Minneapolis, and an adjunct assistant professor in the School of Nursing at the University of Minnesota.
A member of AACN since 1990, she was a member of the AACN Board of Directors from 2001 to 2004, serving as secretary from 2002 to 2004. She is also a past member of the AACN Certification Corporation Board of Directors.
Tracy is a member and past president of the Greater Twin Cities Area Chapter.
M. Dave Hanson
Hanson is a clinical nurse specialist in cardiovascular surgery progressive and critical care at Clarian Health Partners-Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis, Ind.
He joined AACN in 1992 and was a member of the AACN Board of Directors from 2001 to 2004, serving as treasurer for the last two years of his term. Hanson is a past president of the Dallas County Chapter and is currently actively involved in the Central Indiana Chapter.
Altman is a clinical nurse specialist in the CCU at Virginia Commonwealth University Health System in Richmond, Va.
She has been an active member of AACN at both the national and local levels. In 2003, she joined the NTI Work Group and became chair from 2005 to 2006. She was also a member of the Board Advisory Team from 2000 to 2003 and returned to the team during 2004-05.
Previously, she served on the Advanced Practice Advisory Group from 2000 to 2001 and the Membership Advisory Panel, from 1999 to 2000. She also was a member of the AACN Nominating Committee.
Altman is a member and past president of the Greater Richmond Area Chapter, where she is currently chair of the Odyssey Symposium.
Miller is a critical care staff development educator at Trinity Mother Frances Health System in Tyler, Texas.
A 20-year member of AACN, she served on the 2003 AACN Nominating Committee and has been an AACN/CCRN Ambassador since 1999. Miller has held several leadership posts with the Greater East Texas Chapter. Currently, she is chair of the chapter’s Nominating Committee.
Kristine J. Peterson
Peterson is a clinical nurse specialist at Methodist Hospital Park Nicollet Health Services in Plymouth, Minn.
She was chair of the Advanced Practice Work Group from 2005 to 2006 and has been a member of the NTI Work Group (2004-05) and the Research Work Group (1998-2000), as well as a chapter adviser (2000-02).
Peterson is a member of the Greater Twin Cities Area Chapter, where her past leadership positions include president, treasurer, Research Committee chair and program chair.
Stahl is a clinical nurse specialist in cardiovascular progressive care at St. Luke’s Hospital in Kansas City, Mo.
At the national level, she has been a member of the CCNS Exam Development Committee (2006), a presenter at NTI and API (2001-05) and an NTI Work Group member (2005). During 2004, she was a PCCN item writer, and was a member of the PCCN SAE Committee, Scholarship Review and Awards Review panels, and the Research and Creative Solutions Abstract Review Panel.
She is a member of the Greater Kansas City Chapter.
Elected to the AACN Nominating Committee for 2006-07 were Linda Griego Martinez, RN, MSN, CCRN, APRN-BC, Michele L. Manning, RN, MSN, CCRN, CCNS, Linda A. Prinkey-Briggs, RN, MSN, APRN, BC-ACNP, ANP, CCRN, and Renee Twibell, RN, DNS.
AACN’s Voice and Influence Continue to Strengthen
Accomplishments Outlined at Annual Membership Meeting
The past year was a strong one for AACN, 2005-06 AACN President Debbie Brinker, RN, MSN, CCRN, CCNS, told members during the association’s Annual Meeting and Forum held on May 23 during NTI.
“As the undisputed leader in critical care nursing, AACN continues to strengthen its voice and influence in a healthcare environment that is constantly evolving and sometimes challenging,” Brinker said.
“The fiscal year that was set to end June 30 will again be one of the strongest in the past decade,” she continued. “We have seen a rising trend in membership and have been able to contribute to our financial reserves, providing AACN the financial security from which to invest in cutting-edge programs. We have no reason to believe that AACN won’t continue to thrive and grow in the next decade.”
Among the accomplishments Brinker emphasized was the fact that AACN was one of the top recipients of the California Award for Performance Excellence, which is based on the principles and criteria of the prestigious Malcolm Baldrige program.
“Focusing on what it takes to be an excellent organization raised the bar for the board and staff, and the dedication I’ve seen is impressive and rewarding,” Brinker said.
Evidence of the organization’s excellence lies in its strengths, she said. Among these are continued increases in NTI attendance figures, increased use of the AACN Web site and the fact that 22 units achieved the Beacon Award for Critical Care Excellence, bringing the total number of units that have received the award to 41.
In addition, AACN volunteers and staff continue to ensure that the interests of critical care nurses are represented in other national meetings and organizations. AACN’s voice was present at more than 50 meetings in the past year.
“AACN’s Healthy Work Environments initiative continues to resonate throughout healthcare, with growing interest in learning more about and implementing the AACN Standards for Establishing and Sustaining Healthy Work Environments at the unit, hospital and health system level,” Brinker said.
The standards were downloaded approximately 120,000 times since they were released in January 2005. The standards are also the focus of a series of audio conferences now under way, she explained.
In the coming year, the Healthy Work Environment Standards Work Group will work with nurse leaders who successfully adopted the healthy work environment initiatives to identify tools that others can use when implementing the standards.
On the Horizon
Brinker turned the podium over to then AACN President-elect Mary Fran Tracy, RN, PhD, CCNS, CCRN, FAAN, who offered a preview of the cutting-edge programs AACN will undertake in the coming year.
“As we move into a new fiscal year, we plan to build on the solid foundation laid by this and other leadership teams,” she said. “We are prepared to vigorously pursue programs, resources and services that will make AACN even more relevant and essential to you.”
E-learning will be central to expanding access to the organization’s tools, she said. Among the planned e-learning advances are an electronically formatted Essentials of Nurse Manager Orientation, an enhancement of the standard-bearing Essentials of Critical Care Orientation program and electronic materials for certification exam study.
NTI Scholarship Partners Share Vision
Ten pairs of NTI participants were part of a unique scholarship program that pairs an AACN member with a nonmember. This AACN Vision Partners program grants $1,000 each to the pairs, with the nonmember who has not previously attended NTI receiving a free one-year AACN membership.
This year’s recipients are:
Member: Mary Ann Whicker
Nonmember: Stephen Mansolo
Seton Health Care Network
Member: Lyne Chamberlain
Nonmember: Mary Ann Hoff
South Seminole Hospital
Member: Susan B. Davis
Nonmember: Jo-Ann Burns
Member: Damon Cottrell
Nonmember: Julie Kachmarek
Providence St. Vincent Medical Center
Member: Carol Searls
Nonmember: Sharon French
Mercy Medical Center, Sioux City
Member: Janet M. Kelly
Nonmember: Stefanie Schwartz
Boca Raton Community Hospital
Member: Jennifer Hirst
Nonmember: Jada McDonald
Maury Regional Hospital
Member: Joni Vaughn
Nonmember: Jennifer A. Redlin
Sioux Valley Hospital
Member: Heide Bursch
Nonmember: Kim Tew
University of Iowa Hospital and Clinics
Member: Susan Yeager
Nonmember: MaryAnn Wilcox
Riverside Methodist Hospital
Artistic Touch Shines in NTI Box Art Contest
The creativity of Joy Espejo won her a complimentary registration to NTI 2007 in Atlanta, Ga. Espejo of Englewood, N.J., was the winner of the annual Mail Home Box Decorating Contest at NTI.
Other winners were Jenny Voss of Indianapolis, Ind., who received a $50 gift certificate for use at the AACN bookstore or catalog orders, and James Edwards of Brooklyn, N.Y., who received complimentary shipping of his box. Grace Samson of Las Vegas, Nev., received honorable mention.
2005-06 AACN President Debbie Brinker was
joined by Society of Critical Care Medicine
President Charles Durbin Jr. (left) and American
College of Chest Physicians President W. Michael
Alberts at the annual Presidents Session at NTI.
Association Leaders: Make Team Competence Happen
A call for nurses to begin the dialogue about team competence—nurses, physicians and other staff pulling together for optimal patient outcomes—and to measure optimization of individual team members was issued by 2005-06 AACN President Debbie Brinker, RN, MSN, CCRN, CCNS, during the annual Presidents Session at NTI featuring the leadership of AACN, the American College of Chest Physicians and the Society of Critical Care Medicine.
“The challenge I put forth to you, for all of our members here, is to go forth, look at team competence, research it, publish it, share it and work with us as our associations move forward,” Brinker said.
Communication Is Key
Joining Brinker in discussing the importance of multidisciplinary, multiprofessional teams were ACCP President W. Michael Alberts and SCCM President Charles Durbin Jr., MD. Although the American Thoracic Society is also part of the collaboration striving for better work environments, its president, Peter D. Wagner, MD, was unable to attend the meeting.
“Quality care is not possible without team competence,” Brinker said.
She said communication is the number one teamwork issue that needs improvement. Team members must be clear about team goals and their individual roles in achieving them, she said.
Conflict, all three speakers agreed, is essential to the team.
“We need conflict,” Brinker said. “Conflict is a good thing [because] we want to come to a resolution as a team.”
A Team Effort
Interpersonal communication and professional relationships remain a struggle in achieving team competence, Alberts said.
“Physicians have been slow to adapt to the team concept,” he said, adding that traditional physician education encourages independence.
“We are educated in separate environments, as individuals,” Durbin said.
Alberts said obstacles to effective team leadership include organizational changes, personal beliefs and a competitive atmosphere. Incorporating evaluation and rewarding team participation are necessary to effective team building, he said.
“Healthcare in 2006 is a team sport and a development of effective and efficient teams is crucial to the delivery of quality [healthcare],” he said.
Measurement of team competency needs further study, a session attendee noted. Durbin agreed and suggested case studies.
Member-Get-A-Member Campaign Off to Strong Start
The 2006-07 Member-Get-A-Member Campaign is off to one of its strongest starts, with a total of 738 new members recruited during the drive’s first month.
The total included an impressive start by Diana Lane, RN, MSN, of Hermitage, Tenn., who recruited 30 new members during May. Almost matching Lane’s total on the chapter side was the Greater Richmond Area Chapter, which recruited 28 new members in May.
To move the Member-Get-A-Member program to a 12-month cycle, this campaign was extended through Aug. 31, 2007.
Participation offers recruiters the opportunity to receive valuable rewards, including a $1,000 American Express gift check that will be awarded to the top individual recruiter. The top recruiter is also eligible for three Grand Prize drawings for $500 gift certificates. Every recruiter who enrolls five new members during the program will be entered into the drawing.
In addition, as individuals recruit new members, they are entered into a drawing for a $100 American Express gift check each month they recruit. Winning the gift certificate in May was Myra L. Sanders, RN, ADN, AAS, CCRN, of Bowling Green, Ky.
After recruiting their first five new members, they will receive a $25 gift certificate toward AACN products and services, and $50 after recruiting a total of 10 new members.
The chapter recruiting the most new members during the campaign will receive a $1,000 honorarium check. The winning chapter is also eligible for Grand Prizes drawings for three $500 honorarium checks for the chapter treasuries. In addition, chapters are eligible for monthly drawings for a free NTI registration any month they recruit a new member. The winner for May was the Greater Cincinnati Chapter.
To see the full list of recruiters and their totals for May, visit the AACN Web site.
Audio Conference Focuses on Palliation, End-of-Life Care
Palliation and End-of-Life Management is the topic that will be discussed at an Aug. 10 audio conference cosponsored by AACN and Joint Commission Resources. The presentation, including time for questions, is scheduled from 12:30 to 2 p.m. (ET).
Representing AACN as a co-presenter is Margaret L. Campbell, RN, FAAN, nurse practitioner in palliative care and clinical ethics at Detroit Receiving Hospital and associate director of research for the Center to Advance Palliative-Care Excellence.
The August event is the fourth in a six-part series of 90-minute audio conferences focusing on patient safety and quality of care in acute and critical care.
Remaining sessions are scheduled:
• Oct. 12 Clinical Implications in Managing Pain and Sedation
• Dec. 14 Intensivists, Hospitalists and Advanced Practice Nurses
Healthy Work Environment Standards
In addition to the patient safety and quality-of-care series, AACN and JCR are collaborating on a series of audio conferences that focus on the AACN Standards for Establishing and Sustaining Healthy Work Environments.
Standards to be addressed in the future are:
• Sept. 14 Appropriate Staffing
• Nov. 9 Effective Decision Making
All are also scheduled from 12:30 to 2 p.m. (ET), with a moderated question-and-answer period following each presentation.
Participants can sign up to participate in the audio conference as individuals or with multiple attendees using one telephone line in a conference room. The price is $249 per connection.
For more information about these audio conferences, call (877) 223-6866; www.jcrinc.com > Education > Audio Conferences/Web Conferences.
Scene and Heard
AACN continues to seek visibility for our profession and the organization. Following is an update on recent outreach efforts.
Our Voice in the Media
Grand Forks Herald (March 25, 2006)—“Inside Business” announced that Angela Ransom, RN, and Karen Bostrom, RN, received their adult CCRN certifications from AACN Certification Corporation. “The CCRN certified nurse has the advanced body of knowledge necessary to care for the complex needs of complex patients whether acutely or critically ill. This designation is a significant career milestone that is achieved through hard work, dedication and professionalism at the highest level.”
Nursing Economics (March 1, 2006)—An article titled “Authentic Leadership” explored a concept that was “deemed so important that AACN chose to include authentic leadership as one of the six standards necessary for establishing and sustaining healthy work environments. In their view, inattention to authentic leadership creates such a serious obstacle to patient safety, recruitment/retention, and an organization’s ability to sustain financial viability that the journey to excellence becomes impossible … Authentic leaders fully embrace the imperative of a healthy workplace environment, authentically live it, and engage others in the achievement. The authentic leader models the way and ensures justice and fairness for all.”
St. Louis Nursing News (March 20, 2006)—“Changing the Way Patients Are Treated With Feeding Tubes.” This feature about Norma A. Metheny, RN, PhD, FAAN, noted that “she was awarded the designation of Distinguished Research Lecturer at AACN’s 2006 National Teaching Institute & Critical Care Exposition in May. “I thoroughly enjoy research because it is stimulating,” Metheny said. “In addition, it allows me to provide information to nurses to help improve practice. I also enjoy teaching because it allows me to help students develop into clinicians with inquiring minds, capable of applying logic to their practice.”
Audrain Medical Center News (March 8, 2006)—“Nurses at Audrain Medical Center Recognized for 20 Years as Critical Care Nurses.” “Four nurses representing over 100 years of service to AMC have each been recognized by AACN for 20 years or more of continued CCRN certification,” announced Kari Wilson, vice president of clinical services. She said, ‘CCRN certification is one of the most advanced professional credentials that can be achieved by a nurse in the field of critical care … the credentials demonstrate that these nurses have a high level of commitment to providing exceptional care … These nurses take pride in their certification and we are proud that they take the time and effort to recertify every three years.”
Plain Dealer (March 4, 2006)—“Critical Care Unit at UH Recognized.” The medical ICU at University Hospitals of Cleveland received AACN’s Beacon Award for Critical Care Excellence. “The MICU at University Hospitals was the only Beacon Award recipient in northern Ohio of the 12 hospital units honored.”
Chicago Hospital News (March 2006)—“A Synergy Model for Patient Care: A Truer Measure of Staffing for Quality Care Than Ratios, Quotients or Numbers.” “Several years ago, the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses, after much study, determined that the needs and characteristics of individual patients when matched with the competencies of individual nurses would result in optimal patient outcomes. This was codified in the AACN Synergy Model for Patient Care … Some healthcare providers have implemented variations of the AACN Synergy Model, modified to meet the specific circumstances of their hospital, nurses and nursing managers and the patients for whom they care. This approach adopts a nursing care model that combines knowledge, competencies, skills, experience and attitudes that meet the specific needs of patients and their families.”
Illinois Register Rules of Governmental Agencies (Dec. 2, 2005)—“Whereas, to keep up with the needs of their profession, AACN offers continual development and training programs and workshops for their members and whereas, this year the Northwest Chicago Area Chapter of AACN will host the 32nd Midwest Conference during the week of March 12” … the governor proclaimed “March 12-18, 2006 as Critical Care Nurses Week in Illinois in recognition of critical care nurses for their service to critically ill patients.”
Mission Health & Hospitals Newsletter (March 2006)—In the “Achievement” section, it was reported that three of the hospital’s nurses, Tori Mason, Harriet McGinnis and John Unger, all CCRNs, earned the new CSC subspecialty certification—the first nurses at Mission to do so. The newsletter also included a photo of the hospital’s CCRN “wall of fame,” with plaques recognizing each RN who successfully achieved CCRN certification.
Healthcare Executive (March 1, 2006)—“People” announced that four hospitals that are led by members of the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE) received AACN’s Beacon Award. The article listed each hospital, its location and the CEO.
Vital Signs (March 2006)—“Program Wins Baxter Award.” AACN presented Strong Memorial Hospital’s medical ICU team with the Baxter Excellence in Patient Safety Award “for implementing a program to reduce the cases of ventilator-associated pneumonia. The unit has had only two cases in more than 850 days.” Project Manager Barry Evans, RN, MSN, CNS, said, “To be cited by the organization that sets the standards is quite a feather in our cap.”
Our Voice at the Table
Gov. Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota issued a proclamation naming May 2006 “Critical Care Month.” Representatives from local and national organizations, including AACN, SCCM and ATS, attended the ceremony. President Mary Fran Tracy, RN, PhD, CCNS, CCRN, FAAN, who was president-elect at the time, represented AACN.
Roberta Kaplow, RN, PhD, CCNS, CCRN, AACN board member, presented “Oncology 101” to approximately 60 nurses at AACN’s West Michigan Chapter.
Kaplow presented “Coagulopathies in the ICU” for the Southern Central Connecticut Chapter of AACN. There were about 100 participants at this evening program.
Tracy spoke at the 2nd annual Clarian Patient Safety Summit in Indianapolis, Ind. She highlighted AACN’s Healthy Work Environment Standards and their relationship to patient safety. More than 200 people attended this conference that focused on the role of patients as partners in healthcare. Susan Sheridan, a consumer advocate and one of the speakers, said, “Communication is the key.”
Janice M. Wojcik, MS, RN, CCRN, APRN, BC, AACN board member, participated in the Central Pennsylvania Chapter’s AACN Certification Banquet in Ebensburg, Pa. The chapter held the event to celebrate certification and to honor certified chapter members.
Wojcik presented a keynote address, “Be the Change You Want to See: Engage and Transform,” at the Northern New Jersey Chapter’s conference, Options in Critical Care Nursing, in Fairfield, NJ. Connie Barden, RN, MSN, CCRN, CCNS, past AACN board president, gave a keynote address on “Healthy Work Environments” at the conference the following day.
Wojcik was a featured speaker during Nurses Week at St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center in Paterson, NJ. She spoke about immediate past AACN President Debbie Brinker’s theme, “Engage and Transform,” and AACN’s Healthy Work Environment Standards.
Patricia Morton, RN, PhD, ACNP, FAAN, AACN board member, served on a panel at the National Student Nurses Association’s 54th Annual Convention in Baltimore, Md. The topic of the panel discussion was graduate education.
Tracy attended the Presidential Tea with AACN’s Southeastern Pennsylvania Chapter president, Rose Shaffer. They updated approximately 70 attendees on AACN initiatives and answered questions about AACN and SePA.
Tracy gave the keynote presentation, “Engage and Transform: The Power of Collaboration,” to approximately 850 attendees at the Trends in Trauma and Cardiovascular Care Conference in King of Prussia, Pa.
Dave Hanson, MSN, RN, CCRN, CNS, AACN board president-elect, gave the keynote address, “Engage and Transform: Making Your Optimal Contribution,” at the 5th annual Lessons from the Heart Nursing Symposium in Wilkes Barre, Pa. He also presented “Acute Coronary Syndromes: Triage, Management and Evaluation.”
Hanson gave the keynote address, “Engage and Transform: Making Your Optimal Contribution,” at the 18th annual Trends in Critical Care Symposium in Cincinnati, Ohio. In addition, he presented “Making the 12-lead ECG Connection” and “Critical Care’s Guiding Light: In Search of Beacon.”
John Dixon, RN, MSN, immediate past AACN board member, received an invitation from the nursing administration group at Presbyterian Hospital of Dallas to present AACN’s Healthy Work Environment Standards.
Past AACN Board President Kathy McCauley, RN, PhD, BC, FAAN, FAHA, presented “Creating Healthy Work Environments” for the 24th annual Trends in Cardiovascular Nursing Continuing Education Conference, sponsored by Washoe Medical Center, Reno, Nev.
McCauley presented “Engage and Transform Your Work Environments: Creating the Healthy ICU” and “Wolff-Parkinson-White Syndrome and AV Nodal Reentry Tachycardia” at the Emerging Concepts in Cardiovascular Care Conference in Grand Rapids, Mich.
If you or your chapter has reached out to the media or other groups to promote AACN and critical care nursing, we’d like to know. E-mail your information to Judy.Wilkin@aacn.org.
What’s in the August Issue of Critical Care Nurse?
• Chronic Kidney Disease: Acute Manifestations and Role of Critical Care Nurses
• Advance Directives and End-of-Life Decision Making
• Using the Synergy Model to Provide Spiritual Nursing Care in Critical Care Settings
• Use of the Basic Knowledge Assessment Tools (BKATs) for Critical Care Nursing and Effects on Staff Nurses
Critical Care Nurse online ccn.aacnjournals.org
July 13 AACN/JCR audio conference featuring Healthy Work Environments Standard: True Collaboration; 12:30 to 2 p.m. (EDT). Price is $249. For more
information, call (877) 223-6866; www.jcrinc.com > Education > Audio Conferences/Web Conferences.
Aug. 10 AACN/JCR audio conference on Palliation and End-of-Life Management; 12:30 to 2 p.m. (EDT). Price is $249. For more information, call (877) 223-6866;
www.jcrinc.com > Education > Audio Conferences/Web Conferences.
Aug. 15 Deadline to apply for ICU Design Citation. For more information, contact Carol Prendergast at SCCM, (847) 827-6826; fax (847) 827-7428;
Sept. 1 Deadline to submit Research and Creative Solutions Abstracts for NTI 2007 in Atlanta, Ga. The applications, as well as guidelines and resources, are
available online at www.aacn.org > Research > NTI Abstracts.
Oct. 1 Deadline to apply for Evidence-Based Clinical Practice Grant, AACN Clinical Practice Grant and AACN-Sigma Theta Tau Critical Care Grant. For more
information, visit the Research area of the AACN Web site or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
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