Complete History of AACN

Added to Collection

Explore the history of AACN and the many milestones over the years from humble beginnings in 1969 to today’s exceptional community of 100,000+nurses.

1960

1969
American Association of Cardiovascular Nurses (AACN) founded to help educate nurses

1970

1971
AACN changed name to American Association of Critical-Care Nurses, a specialty nursing organization committed to a healthcare system driven by the needs of patients and families where critical care nurses make their optimal contribution.
1974
First year for annual National Teaching Institute & Critical Care Exposition (NTI), the premier conference for acute and critical care nurses.
1975
AACN Certification Corporation, credentialing arm of AACN, founded to maintain professional practice excellence through certification and certification renewal of nurses who care for acutely and critically ill patients and their families.
1976
CCRN critical care specialty certification launched for nurses caring for acutely and/or critically ill adult, pediatric or neonatal patients.

1980

1980
Critical Care Nurse, bimonthly clinical practice journal launched to provide current, relevant and useful information on the bedside care of acutely and critically ill patients.
1989
Advanced Critical Care, quarterly journal launched with in-depth articles for experienced acute and critical care clinicians at the bedside, advanced practice nurses, and clinical and academic educators.

1990

1992
American Journal of Critical Care, bimonthly journal launched with evidence-based interdisciplinary knowledge for high acuity and critical care.
1999
CCNS specialty certification introduced for the acute/critical care clinical nurse specialist educated at the graduate level to provide care to adult, pediatric or neonatal patients.

2000

2002
“Safeguarding the Patient and the Profession: The Value of Critical Care Nurse Certification” white paper released on benefits that certification brings to the public, employers and nurses.
2002
“Scope of Practice and Standards of Professional Performance for the Acute and Critical Care Clinical Nurse Specialist” released.
2002
Essentials of Critical Care Orientation (ECCO), e-learning course offered for novice nurses and as a review for experienced nurses.
2003
Beacon Award for Critical Care Excellence program introduced with tools to assist critical care units on their path to excellence, honoring individual units that excel in all aspects of patient care.
2004
PCCN specialty certification launched for progressive care nurses caring for acutely ill adults.
2004
“National Critical Care Survey” completed, the first survey to provide data on critical care units and the environments in which critical care nurses work.
2005
CMC subspecialty certification for certified nurses providing bedside care to acutely and/or critically ill adult cardiac patients launched.
2005
CSC subspecialty certification launched for certified nurses providing bedside care to acutely and/or critically ill adult patients during the first 48 hours after cardiac surgery.
2005
Basic ECG Interpretation e-learning course launched to equip nurses with essential knowledge for quickly identifying potential cardiac threats and responding appropriately.
2005
“AACN Standards for Establishing and Sustaining Healthy Work Environments” published with six standards for a healthy work environment.
2006
Results of “RN Work Environment Survey,” conducted with Nursing Spectrum and Bernard Hodes Group, released.
2007
ACNPC specialty certification launched for acute care nurse practitioners educated at the graduate level to provide care to adult patients.
2007
CCRN-E specialty certification introduced as renewal option for nurses primarily working in a tele-ICU monitoring acutely and/or critically ill adult patients from a remote location.
2007
Essentials of Nurse Manager Orientation, a Web-based, self-paced, e-learning course, launched for nurse managers, in collaboration with the American Organization of Nurse Executives.
2008
Practice Alert: “Ventilator Associated Pneumonia” released.
2008
Practice Alerts: “Dysrhythmia Monitoring” and “ST Segment Monitoring” released.
2008
CNML certification for nurse managers and leaders offered in partnership with AONE Credentialing Center.
2008
The Preceptor Challenge e-learning program to practice essential precepting skills in a virtual hospital-based environment.
2008
Promoting Excellence in Palliative and End-of-Life Care e-learning program introduced.
2008
“AACN Scope and Standards for Acute and Critical Care Nursing Practice” released.
2009
First issue of AACN Bold Voices published, a monthly member magazine that includes clinical articles, a note from AACN’s president and AACN articles.
2009
Practice Alerts: “Dye in Enteral Feedings” and “Pulmonary Artery Pressure Measurement” released.
2009
Essentials of Pediatric Critical Care Orientation (EPCCO), an online introduction to pediatric critical care, developed by Children’s Hospital Association, launched.

2010

2010
Practice Alert: “Family Presence During Resuscitation” released.
2010
Practice Alert: “Noninvasive Blood Pressure Monitoring” released.
2010
Practice Alert: “Oral Care for Patients at Risk for VAP” released.
2010
Practice Alert: “Venous Thromboembolism Prevention” released.
2010
Practice Alert: “Verification of Feeding Tube Placement” released.
2010
Online HWE assessment tool launched for hospital teams to measure their work environment’s health against AACN standards.
2010
A Slice of AACN NTI, annual conference began in Las Vegas. Faculty from AACN’s National Teaching Institute & Critical Care Exposition shared their expertise in high acuity and critical care.
2011
CCRN-E offered as initial option, in addition to renewal, for nurses primarily working remotely.
2011
“The Silent Treatment” findings presented with VitalSmarts and AORN. Study addressed the concerns of nurses and other healthcare personnel that are often not discussed and contribute to avoidable medical errors.
2011
Annual AACN Impact Research Grants first offered. Three awards, addressing AACN research priorities, up to $50,000 each.
2011
HHS-CCSC (Critical Care Societies Collaborative) awards for reducing or eliminating healthcare-associated infections initiated in collaboration with Health and Human Services (HHS).
2011
Practice Alert: “Catheter-Associated Urinary Tract Infections” released.
2011
Practice Alert: “Delirium Assessment and Management” released.
2011
Practice Alert: “Family Presence: Visitation in the Adult ICU” released.
2011
Practice Alert: “Prevention of Aspiration” released.
2012
AACN Nurse Manager Priorities, annual regional conference to help managers and emerging nurse leaders address the complexities of leading in an ever-changing healthcare environment. 
2012
AACN Progressive Care Pathways, annual regional conference launched with evidence-based content designed to address a wide range of progressive care nurses’ educational needs.
2012
AACN CSI Academy, nurse training and leadership program launched at several hospitals, with more locations to be added.
2012
“AACN Scope and Standards for Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Practice” published.
2012
AACN: Acute and Critical Care Pharmacology, a Web-based course, in collaboration with American Society of Health-System Pharmacists and Elsevier Clinical Solutions, covers safe administration of medications commonly used in acute and critical care.
2012
First issue of CriticalCare eNewsline published (HTML version of enewsletter with ads).
2013
AACN Critical Care Webinar Series began offering free 30-minute monthly webinars presented by nationally recognized speakers.
2013
ACNPC-AG certification released for the adult-gerontology acute care nurse practitioner educated at the graduate level.
2013
ACCNS-AG, ACCNS-P certifications launched for adult-gerontology clinical nurse specialists and pediatric clinical nurse specialists, respectively.
2013
Practice Alert: “Assessing Pain in the Critically Ill Adult” released.
2014
ACCNS-N advanced practice Consensus Model-based certification launched for adult-gerontology clinical nurse specialists.
2014
AACN membership topped 102,000.
2014
“AACN Tele-ICU Nursing Practice Guidelines,” the first authoritative document to define guidelines for the emerging subspecialty of tele-ICU nursing practice, published.
2014
“AACN Scope and Standards for Acute Care Clinical Nurse Specialist Practice” published.
2014
CCRN-K certification for non-bedside critical care knowledge professionals launched.
2014
ACCNS-AG Certification Review Course for adult-gerontology clinical nurse specialists.
2014
AACN (as part of Critical Care Societies Collaborative) supported ABIM Foundation’s Choosing Wisely initiative by identifying five routine critical care practices that may not be necessary or could be harmful.
2014
AACN, AONE and Emergency Nurses Association issue a joint statement on Ebola, calling on their respective members to collaborate in identifying resource and system gaps that might harm patients or caregivers; put solutions in place to prevent the spread of this disease; and sustain their collaboration.  
2015
Optimizing Care for Acutely Ill Older Adults web-based course launched to teach acute and critical care nurses to differentiate between symptoms and conditions of usual aging and those arising from illness.
2015
More than 500 NTI attendees participate in a special half-day summit to discuss the importance of deterring burnout and creating solutions to address the issue in clinical practice.
2015
CSI Academy added nine Phoenix-area hospitals within the Banner Health System as the eighth regional cohort.
2015
The new edition of AACN Scope and Standards for Acute and Critical Care Nursing Practice incorporates advances in scientific knowledge, clinical practice, technology and other changes in the dynamic healthcare environment.
2016
Employee feedback company Quantum Workplace – known for its Best Places to Work contest – recognized AACN with its Employee Voice Awards for achieving high levels of employee engagement.
2016
AACN CSI Academy added eight hospitals in San Diego as the ninth regional cohort.
2016
The second edition of “AACN Standards for Establishing and Sustaining Healthy Work Environments: A Journey to Excellence” is published, reaffirming AACN’s commitment to improve the environments in which nurses work. The standards are now supported by additional research and new evidence confirming the link between healthy work environments and optimal outcomes for patients, healthcare professionals and organizations.
2016
AACN presented “Staffing Through the Lens of HWE: Many Shades of Gray,” a half-day interactive summit during NTI in New Orleans.
2016
A new version of AACN’s popular online orientation course for critical care nurses, Essentials of Critical Care Orientation (ECCO), debuted. Since launching in 2002, more than 1,100 hospitals/ healthcare facilities in the U.S. and Canada have used ECCO to support their critical care orientation and classroom-based education programs. Over 92,000 nurses have successfully completed the course.
2016
PCCN-K certification introduced for progressive care nurses who in their practice influence the care delivered to acutely/critically ill patients, but do not primarily provide direct care.
2016
In collaboration with CCSC members, AACN co-published a report on burnout syndrome in critical care health care professionals. Burnout in Critical Care – A Critical Situation provides guidance on mitigating burnout syndrome and calls for initiating research to examine burnout prevention as well as treatment.
2016
As part of ongoing efforts to standardize clinical practice and improve patient outcomes, AACN updated several Practice Alerts, including those related to cardiac monitoring and preventing healthcare-associated infections.
2017
The first phase of AACN CSI Academy concluded, with almost 250 nurses at 66 hospitals participating. Positive fiscal impact is estimated at nearly $35 million. With nearly 43,000 unique downloads of project materials, AACN’s online library of CSI Innovation projects has become a resource for hospitals worldwide.
2017
For the second year, AACN is recognized with Quantum Workplace’s Employee Voice Award for achieving the highest level of engagement in the small-sized organization category for its employee survey.