181724 Public Health Nursing Certification: Development of a Policy Statement

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Sarah Buller Fenton, MS, RN, BC , Tazewell County Health Department, Tremont, IL
Wanda Aberle, MS, RN , Peoria City/County Health Department, Peoria, IL
Kathleen A. Baldwin, PhD RN , College of Nursing, University of Illinois-Chicago, Peoria, IL
University of Illinois Chicago College of Nursing , Advancing Public Health Nursing Education, STF - PHN Certification, Peoria Regional Program, Peoria, IL
To meet the increasingly complex health challenges facing our communities, a collaborative of Illinois public health nursing leaders recognized that increased emphasis must be placed on ensuring the competency of the public health nursing workforce. Certification, a strategy designed to assure minimum competency standards, recognizes public health nurses who complete all eligibility criteria and signifies specialized knowledge associated with current standards of practice. This report outlines the methods used to create a policy statement and call to action for stakeholders who can influence and benefit from the certified public health nurses' contributions to public health and the profession. These methods include: forming a state task force, consulting with a nurse educator experienced in policy development, identifying a unified vision, and developing a multi-targeted action plan that results in the current policy statement. Research supports the benefits of certification in other specialty areas of nursing. Public health nursing has the opportunity and the obligation to demonstrate its value and leadership by becoming recognized as a specialty, certified to assure effective population-focused care delivery. Expectations are that certification of public health nurses in Illinois will result in improved population health outcomes and increase recognition of the profession.

Learning Objectives:
Describe the rationale for public health nursing certification. Identify the methods used to develop a public health nursing policy statement. Describe strategies defined in policy statement to promote public health nursing certification.

Keywords: Public Health Nursing, Certification

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a master's prepared public health nurse, I am the Director of Nursing at a local county health department, I am an adjunct faculty member for the University of Illinois Chicago, College of Nursing - Peoria Regional Program and I am one of the principal writers of the policy statement developed through the State Task Force for PHN Certification.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

See more of: PHN Poster Session-II
See more of: Public Health Nursing