February Ambassador Update: Focus on AACN Election

As 2014 unfolds, several annual AACN initiatives are gaining momentum: the Election, NTI and Certified Nurses Day.

This Update will provide key information about each, but it will focus most on the upcoming election of the ACCN Board of Directors and Nominating Committee.

The election provides AACN members the opportunity to select the next leaders of our community. The bylaws require 5% of members vote for the election to be valid. Frankly, we struggle to hit that mark each year.

As an Ambassador, you are in the position to reach out to your colleagues, educate them about the election and encourage them to learn about the candidates and vote. This Update provides tips and strategies for doing just this.

Will you step forward and use your voice to influence the selection of our community’s leaders?

Thank you again for all you do.


Election 2014: Step Forward and Vote

Election Facts 

  • Positions to be filled include: president-elect and four directors for the FY2015–17 AACN Board and three members of the 2015 Nominating Committee.
  • Candidate profiles will be posted online Feb. 21.
  • Voting will open March 21 and close April 21.
  • Eligible voters will receive an email March 21–22 with voting information and an easy link to the online ballot.  

Election Talking Points

It is vitally important to our AACN community that members vote so that our leadership can represent the core values and issues most important to our membership. The following talking points may help you build your case:

  • Don’t leave to chance who will lead AACN, your professional organization.
    • Initiatives driven by AACN significantly impact the nursing profession; especially acute and critical care nursing.
    • Have a say in who will influence the strategic direction of AACN by executing your right to vote.
  • It is foundational to AACN that its members have a voice in selecting their leaders — so foundational that our bylaws prescribe that at least 5% of our members must vote for the election to be valid.
    • Every vote is vital.
  • Voting allows you to demonstrate your pride in AACN and your support of colleagues who are candidates.

Election Action Steps

  • Lead by example: Step Forward and cast your ballot on March 21.
  • Personally ask your AACN colleagues — face-to-face — to vote.
  • Kick off a “Vote This Week” email campaign on March 21 directed to all AACN members in your unit, your facility and your chapter.
    • Although voting continues for a month, urge your colleagues to “just do it” now.
  • Provide email reminders throughout the voting period.
  • Urge voting at chapter events throughout the voting period.
  • When you are with a group of AACN members, pull out an iPad or laptop and show your colleagues how easy it is to vote online.
  • If you are a member of the AACN Facebook page and/or the Ambassador Facebook page, post a simple “I voted!” message.
    • This will show your pride in the organization and remind and encourage others to vote too.

Register for NTI — and Encourage Others to Come Too

If you have not done so already, now is the time to register for the 2014 National Teaching Institute & Critical Care Exposition. The conference is in Denver, May 19–22 with preconferences May 17–18.

You recently received an NTI informational packet in the mail. (If you have not received a packet, you will in the next few days.) It includes NTI posters, brochures and talking points to help promote attendance among your colleagues and your organization’s decision makers.

The packet also includes information on how to effectively use the NTI Return on Investment Toolkit to help your colleagues (and yourself) write strong business proposals for attending NTI.

Choosing Wisely: Critical Care Practices to Question 

AACN — as part of the Critical Care Societies Collaborative (CCSC) — has identified five routine critical care practices that should be questioned as a patient’s care plan is developed because they may not always be necessary and could, in fact, be harmful. The release of the CCSC list is part of the Choosing Wisely national campaign initiated by the ABIM Foundation in 2012 to help patients and their healthcare providers talk about what tests and treatments are really necessary. A downloadable PDF of the CCSC list for your use in staff meetings and/or posting in your unit is available on the Choosing Wisely website.

Certification News

New ACCNS-N Exam. A new ACCNS-N certification exam that is fully aligned with the Consensus Model for APRN Regulation was launched Feb. 12 for CNSs who have graduated from a neonatal CNS graduate program with a Consensus Model-based curriculum that covers wellness through acute care. AACN Certification Corporation now has four new AACN Consensus Model-based APRN exams — ACNPC-AG, ACCNS-AG, ACCNS-P, ACCNS-N — available for graduates of AACN-approved programs.

New ACCNS-AG Certification Review. AACN has launched an online certification review course to help prospective adult-gerontology clinical nurse specialists (CNSs) prepare for the ACCNS-AG certification exam — the only exam currently available for this CNS specialty that aligns with the Consensus Model for APRN Regulation. The course is available in an interactive, on-demand format that mirrors the Q&A structure of the exam and provides the rationale for correct answers. It is free when you apply for the certification exam. If purchased separately, the course is $159 for members and $199 for nonmembers.

Certified Nurses Day March 19. Share your strategies, testimonials and success stories in honor of certified nurses. Send to certification@aacn.org with "Celebrate Certified Nurses" in the subject line.
Also, don’t forget to order Certified Nurses Day buttons to help you celebrate and promote the importance of certification. You can order them through the online Ambassador Resource Order Form and the Chapter Resource Order Form. Order quickly — buttons are available on a first-come, first-served basis, and quantities are limited.

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