Candidate for Director: Megan Brunson

Megan Brunson, RN, MSN, CNL, CCRN-CSC
CVICU Night RN Supervisor


Medical City Dallas Hospital
Dallas, Texas

Experience and Activities


Chapter Membership

  • Dallas County Chapter, 2007–present
  • Atlanta Area Chapter, lifetime membership

AACN Commitment and Involvement in the Past 3 Years

Includes how the candidate integrated AACN's mission and work into her current role and practice. Local and national volunteer activities are listed, if applicable.

  • Co-lead, Chapter Advisory Team, July 2012–present
  • Ambassador, 2005–present
  • NTI 2013, Boston
    • Primary speaker, “Case by Case: The Forensics of Successful AACN Chapters as Defined by the Healthy Work Environment Standards”
    • Co-presenter, “Chapter Roundtable Discussion”
  • Developed and recorded “Social Media in Chapters” webinar, 2013
  • Chapter advisor buddy to new chapter advisors, July 2010–June 2012
  • Chair, Region 15 meeting hosting 20 chapters, April 2012
  • Chapter Poster Abstract Review Panel, 2012
  • NTI Poster Abstract Review Panel, 2012
  • Co-presenter, “Rapid Response: Early Resuscitation in Preventing Chapter Death,” NTI 2012, Orlando, Fla.
  • Chapter advisor, Region 15 (Texas, Oklahoma), July 2009–July 2012
  • CSC Print Practice Exam Committee, September 2010–September 2011 

Key Professional Activities Outside AACN in the Past 3 Years

Includes involvement with other professional organizations, teaching and/or speaking.

  • Lead investigator, “Measuring the Effect of Ambient Noise Levels on Sleep Patterns at Night,” June 2012–present
  • Member, Clinical Nurse Leader Association, 2010–present
  • Speaker, Hospital Corporations of America, Virtual Nursing Research Day, December 2012
  • “Professional Organizations for Professional Development,” Medical City Dallas Hospital, Standards of Nursing Practice Committee meeting, October 2010
  • Speaker, “Induced Hypothermia,” Alliance of Cardiovascular Professionals Regional Conference, August 2010 

Issues Statement

Critical care as we know it has formally been in practice for about 65 years. We have switched the paradigm over time from learning how to hook patients up to machines to how to get them off.

When removing machines peacefully or returning patients to the highest quality of life possible, a nurse is there. What has caused this shift can certainly be credited to nursing research and technical advances, but could it not also be shaped by clinical experience that is not validated?

A recent article in Critical Care discusses unproven ideas for the future of critical care nursing. The article highlights clinical investigations and trials that can lag behind collective experience and knowhow.

Progress made this way can be very daunting. This lag in time is a missed opportunity to accelerate the healing process of patients and reduce illness. 

It is not realistic to assume every nurse would lead a research study, clinical trial or scientific experiment. How do we collect our bedside experience and connect on a wide scale?

As AACN grows past 100,000 members it has become the outlet and union we need to be a team across a huge range of critical care specialties, experience and thinking. The paradigm has shifted from working with those we know to working with people we have never met.

We are using technology to make connections never before possible, allowing for reflection outside our facilities and giving recognition for all types of successes. We must continue to push ourselves to make those connections so we can point critical care in a new direction.

Bedside nurses can’t live in a silo and let someone else make those connections. Critical care nursing is shaped by visions that are discussed, innovations not validated and untested ideas.

Return to candidate main page