News: AACN Honors Nurse Researcher Lusardi

Editorial Contact:
Kristie Aylett
AACN Communications
(228) 229-9472

American Association of Critical-Care Nurses to present Flame of Excellence Award to Paula Lusardi

Massachusetts nurse researcher recognized for fostering a climate of interdisciplinary patient-centered research leading to evidence-based practice innovations

ALISO VIEJO, Calif. — March 5, 2014 — The American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN) will present the Flame of Excellence Award to Paula Lusardi, RN, PhD, CCRN, CCNS, for her career-long commitment to evidence-based bedside practice.

Lusardi will receive the award — which honors sustained contributions to acute and critical care nursing at a high level and with broad reach — at the 2014 National Teaching Institute & Critical Care Exposition, Denver, May 17–22.

Prior to her retirement in 2013, Lusardi served as director of nursing research and as a critical and acute care clinical nurse specialist at Baystate Medical Center, Springfield, Mass.

Throughout her 45-year clinical career at Baystate and other hospitals in Massachusetts, Rhode Island and California, Lusardi has relentlessly focused on patients, families and evidence-based practice innovations.

During her tenure at Baystate, Lusardi’s unit became one of the first to receive AACN’s original Beacon Award for Critical Care Excellence. The unit also was among the first to receive the Beacon Award for Excellence when the program was revised in 2010.

Lusardi established a nursing research council and a climate of true interdisciplinary collaboration that resulted in evidence-based practice changes throughout Baystate’s multihospital system. Throughout her career, she has mentored nurses in the planning and implementation of evidence-based projects.

Her research demonstrates a far-reaching impact on a variety of patient care and professional practice issues, from delirium and pressure ulcers to nurse-physician collaboration and the impact of certification.

She also has held numerous academic appointments as assistant professor and adjunct faculty, advising multiple doctoral candidates and mentoring countless students.

In addition to AACN chapter activities, national task forces and work groups, Lusardi served a three-year term on AACN’s national board and was a contributing editor to Critical Care Nurse, an AACN journal, for three years.

Lusardi earned nursing degrees from Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, N.Y., and Boston University before completing her doctorate in theory and research from the University of Rhode Island, Kingston.


About AACN’s Flame of Excellence Award: AACN’s Flame of Excellence Award recognizes consistent high-level outcomes with a broad reach in acute and critical care nursing. Selected from the AACN Circle of Excellence Society, Flame of Excellence Award recipients promote patient-driven excellence through skilled communication, collaboration and decision making that transform thinking and achieve visible results. Award recipients receive a $500 honorarium and a crystal replica of the AACN vision icon at the 2014 National Teaching Institute & Critical Care Exposition, May 17-22, in Denver.

About the National Teaching Institute & Critical Care Exposition: Established in 1974, AACN’s National Teaching Institute & Critical Care Exposition (NTI) represents the world’s largest educational conference and trade show for nurses who care for acutely and critically ill patients and their families. Bedside nurses, nurse educators, nurse managers, clinical nurse specialists and nurse practitioners attend NT.

About the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses: Founded in 1969 and based in Aliso Viejo, Calif., the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN) is the largest specialty nursing organization in the world. AACN joins together the interests of more than 500,000 acute and critical care nurses and claims more than 235 chapters worldwide. The organization’s vision is to create a healthcare system driven by the needs of patients and their families in which acute and critical care nurses make their optimal contribution.

American Association of Critical-Care Nurses, 101 Columbia, Aliso Viejo, Calif. 92656-4109;
Phone: (949) 362-2000; Fax: (949) 362-2020; www.aacn.org; facebook.com/aacnface; twitter.com/aacnme

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