My Nursing Care Plan: One Year Later

My-Nursing-Care-Plan.PNGIt’s hard to believe that it’s been a year since we began developing My Nursing Care Plan! It has been such a fun project for me, as well as a learning experience. Thinking about and organizing the content was challenging, even though, as a nurse myself, I know what my requirements are, what I need to do to stay up-to-date in nursing, and what I should be doing to balance work and life! The difficulty was putting it down in words and figuring out how to try and juggle it all. Creating the companion video and infographics was something new for me too – but I do love learning new things, especially when it comes to technology – so it was quite a treat to be involved in those projects. Lastly, having a conversation with Michelle Berreth RN, CRNI®, CPP, a nurse educator for the Infusion Nurses Society (INS), was quite eye-opening and inspiring, but more on that later…

So, what’s happened since my Mid-Year Update? Not too much…here’s a quick recap and a look ahead to 2017:
  • 2017-to-do-list.PNGSince I renewed my licenses in 2016, I’m not due for renewal until 2018. I’m proud to say that I’ve already logged in 12 contact hours toward my 30-hour requirement for license renewal for my RN license. I do need, however, to step up my contact hours related to women’s health to meet my 45-hour requirement for my NP license! My goal is to complete 35 contact hours related to women’s health by 12/31/17.
  • I’ve decided that before returning to school, I’d like to get back to the bedside. What I really need to think about is “what does that mean?” Do I want to work as a staff nurse or nurse practitioner? In critical care or women’s health? My heart is leaning toward acute care, but I’m also considering inpatient hospice.
  • Regardless of what clinical path I decide to take, I’d like to get certified. Something new I discovered last year were ‘-K’ or ‘knowledge’ certifications, specifically for nurses or NPs who don’t provide direct care, but do influence patient care. I will definitely be looking a little closer at this opportunity.
  • Work-life balance continues to be a struggle, just as I’m sure it is for many of you. My cough is now under control, and the focus now turns to eating and sleeping right, and exercising more. I’m due for my annual gynecologic exam and mammogram, so I’ll be scheduling those ASAP.  
Now, back to my conversation with Michelle from INS. During our discussion, we came up with some insights to consider when using My Nursing Care Plan that I think are important to share.
  • Consider asking others – colleagues, family, friends – to contribute to your own care plan.
  • Waiting for the right time to get things done isn’t realistic. When is the right time? If you wait for it, it may never come.
  • Assess if multitasking really is in your best interest. Remember that it doesn’t work for everyone and it’s okay to do one thing at a time.
  • Be present. Whether at work or in your personal life, focus on the task at hand – whether it’s a true task or a personal or professional interaction.
  • Evaluate your care plan monthly, preferable about one week before month’s end. See what’s left to do and take a glance at plans for the next month. You can even set a reminder to do this on your phone or email.
What’s your update from the past year? Any goals for 2017 you’d care to share?

More Reading & Resources

 


 
Posted: 1/18/2017 7:16:37 AM by Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP | with 0 comments

Categories: InspirationEducation & Career


National Conference for Nurse Practitioners (NCNP) 2016

national-conference-for-nurse-practitioners.PNGThe fall edition of the National Conference for Nurse Practitioners took place earlier this month in Chicago. It was yet another remarkable conference in a great city. Here’s a look at some highlights from the conference and what I learned.

Words from the Experts

My schedule was full with sessions related to dermatology, pain management, critical care, and more! Here are some of the pearls and tips I learned from the sessions I attended:

“Engage patients. Say ‘What matters to you?’ rather than ‘What is the matter with you?’”
Healing Health Care: The Nurse Practitioner Solution
Tom Bartol, NP, CDE
 
“The two most powerful tips to prevent premature aging are never smoke and limit UV exposure.”
Identifying and Treating Common and Benign Skin Conditions
Victor Czerkasij, MA, MS, FNP-BC
 
“Respiratory failure is all about three things. It’s all about the pump. It’s all about the circulation. It’s all about gas exchange.”
Acute Care: Recognizing and Managing Respiratory Failure
Anne Dabrow Woods, DNP, MSN, RN, CRNP, ANP-BC
 
“Things will speak through the skin that have nothing at all to do with the skin.”
Pediatric & Adolescent Skin Issues
Victor Czerkasij, MA, MS, FNP-BC
 
“When initiating opioid therapy, have an exit strategy from the very beginning.”
Opioid Prescribing: Safe Practice, Changing Lives
Barbara St. Marie, PhD
 
“Suboptimal nutrition is a main contributor to postoperative complications.”
Optimizing Outcomes with Pre-Op Evaluation
Monica N. Tombasco, MS, MSNA, FNP-BC, CRNA
 
“There is a strong placebo effect in treatment of IBS. Why? Because symptoms come and go.”
New Concepts in IBS
Christopher Chang, MD, PhD
 
“When evaluating pain treatment, go beyond the number...ask about functionality. ‘What can you do now that you couldn't do before?’”
Chronic Pain Management
Yvonne D’Arcy, MS, CRNP, CNS
 
“The outcome of heart failure is about as severe as most malignancies.”
Comprehensive Management of Heart Failure
Louis Kuritzky, MD
 
“Zika Virus – why now? It's a novel virus introduced to a population with virtually no immunity."
Emerging Infectious Disease Threats: Dengue Fever, Chikungunya, Enterovirus D65, Avian Flu, and Zika Virus
Margaret A. Fitzgerald, DNP, FNP-BC, NP-C, FAANP, CSP, FAAN, DCC

New (to me) Resources

I enjoy when presenters include websites and tools that I can add to my own list of go-to resources. Here are some that I’ve added to my favorites: style type="text/css">ul{margin-left:16px;}
  • Recreating Healthcare — an open and interactive site where visitors can share ideas about health care, and read and comment on the ideas of others.
  • TheNNT — quick summaries of evidence-based medicine provided by a group of physicians.
  • The Collaborative for REMS Education (CO*RE) — tools and resources for safe opioid prescribing.
  • Trauma.org — image databank and other resources for professionals in trauma and critical care.

Posters

NCNP-app.PNGPoster presentations often pull me in because it’s great to see the work that others are doing. It’s so important to share and learn from one another and presenting one’s work at a national conference, such as NCNP, is impressive! While all of the posters were well done and informative, what struck me were two common themes that emerged; there were multiple posters related to pediatric care and still more about shared medical appointments. You can take a look at a selection of the posters (as well as other pictures from the conference) here in our Facebook photo album.

Technology and sharing

As an attendee myself, I found the conference app helpful to keep track of my sessions and fill out evaluations as part of the process for obtaining my continuing education credit. Other features allowed me to learn about exhibitors and even vote on the poster presentations.

Social media was strong at the conference with attendees, conference staff, and exhibitors using the hashtag, #NCNPconf. Attendees shared what they learned and even posted photos of themselves in our selfie booth! Exhibitors also tweeted and shared information about their products and contest winners.
 

Stay tuned for details for NCNP 2017 (#NCNPconf) next spring in Nashville, Tennessee!
Hope to see you there!

NCNP-2017.JPG
 
Posted: 10/19/2016 9:00:44 AM by Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP | with 1 comments

Categories: Continuing EducationEducation & Career


Nursing School Connections and Reconnections: Lisa’s Story

Do you have relationships with people who’ve come in and out of your life at just the right times? People who you connect with so deeply, that no matter how much time has passed, you pick up your friendship without missing a beat? That’s how I’d describe my relationship with Myrna.

In the spring of 1990, my parents and I attended an open house at the nursing school I would be attending that fall. The program consisted of separating the parents from the soon-to-be students for different sessions. When we met up again, my parents introduced me to a couple who they had become fast friends with – and who just happened to be from our same home town! It was Myrna’s mom and dad! And so it was our parents who initially introduced Myrna and I. We spent some time talking that day, amazed that we had never met before back at home. We went to different high schools, but literally lived within five miles of each other!

Lisa-Myrna-graduation.JPGSo we started school and became fast friends. Our nursing class was small enough that everyone got to know each other pretty well. Most of our classes were together and no other students at the university we attended had a schedule like ours as nursing students! After graduation, I remained in the Philadelphia area and Myrna had a commitment in New York City, so we were separated for several years. There was no social media at the time and we were both pretty busy starting our careers, so our contact was pretty limited.

Fast forward to 1995/1996 and Myrna moved to Philadelphia, taking a job in the same hospital I was working. She was in the Surgical ICU, I was in the Medical ICU, so our paths did cross occasionally at work, but it was that time together that really sticks with me. We were single, living in the city, meeting for dinners and hanging out together. We both returned to school and while her focus was on management and mine, women’s health, we still managed to take some of our requisite classes together --- research and statistics. You definitely need a good friend during those graduate level courses – I was so grateful for Myrna!

After we finished our degrees, over the next several years, we both settled down, got married, and started our families. I left the bedside and started working as a clinical editor. Myrna moved to Texas, and later to Colorado and explored some other non-clinical opportunities as well --- in pharmaceutical research, and, later, medical simulation.

Myrna came to Philadelphia a few years later on a work trip and we got to spend a little time together and she explained her work in simulation – I was so impressed. Shortly thereafter, she reached out to me: “Would I like to write some cases for her?” “Of course!”

Fast forward again, now to 2012, I was attending a conference in Colorado. “Hi Myrna – want to try to meet up?” “Yes, I’ll meet you at the airport!” It had been such a long time since we’d seen each other! So we visited briefly then and a few years later, our team at NursingCenter was looking for another clinical editor to join our team. I knew just who to call. 
 
Posted: 9/14/2016 7:40:51 AM by Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP | with 1 comments

Categories: Education & Career


Nursing School Connections and Reconnections: Myrna’s Story

Lisa-Myrna-at-Penn-(1).JPGI recall attending a reception with my parents in the spring prior to starting my Freshman year at the University of Pennsylvania (Penn), School of Nursing in Philadelphia. My mother was talking to another parent and I casually joined the conversation. We found out that she and her daughter, Lisa Morris (Bonsall) were from our same small town on Long Island. We attended different schools and therefore, had never met. Call it coincidence or fate – we became instant friends. We both enrolled in the pre-freshman program in August to prepare for the academic rigors of an Ivy League institution. At the conclusion of the program, we felt we were ready. Contrary to this belief, once the school year ramped up, I for one, found it to be extremely challenging. The course load was very heavy our freshman year and the amount of information we needed to memorize and synthesize was overwhelming at times. We managed to survive our first year, despite numerous distractions: parties, co-ed dorms, football games and sorority initiation.

Sophomore year brought with it the beginning of our clinical rotations and an end to our late night parties. While our non-nursing classmates slept until mid-morning, we were up and out the door by 6 am to get to our clinical site for a full day of patient care. I remember learning the basics of safe nursing practice, medication administration, and disease management. I’ll never forget the nursing process and writing care plans for all of our patients, each encompassing an assessment, diagnosis, planning, implementation, and evaluation. The practical, hands-on education continued through our junior and senior year with opportunities to take advantage of the many liberal arts classes that Penn had to offer. Lisa and I made it through, and we both graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing (BSN). It was 1994 and our turn to make a difference.

Lisa decided to stay in Philadelphia and accepted a position in the Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU) at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (HUP). I headed to the Big Apple to begin my career at the New York University Medical Center as a nurse in the Surgical Intensive Care Unit (SICU). With four years of training at Penn, I confidently thought once again, that I was ready. However, I quickly realized that I had so much more to learn. Each disease and surgical procedure involved many complexities. Every patient’s recovery varied based on multiple factors and comorbidities. I honed my assessment skills and learned to think critically. It was stressful, and I loved patient care, but after a few years in the ICU at NYU, I realized I wanted to do more. I was ready to go back to school and Penn was the obvious choice.

Lisa had come to the same conclusion and had started graduate school at Penn around the same time to pursue an Advanced Nurse Practitioner degree in Women’s Health. I was intrigued by the business of health care and decided to focus my graduate studies on Hospital and Healthcare Management. We both worked full-time, and many night shifts, in our respective ICUs during graduate school. We found ourselves back in the Biomedical Library, spending countless hours studying for exams, writing papers and preparing for presentations. Upon completion of our Master’s degrees, our occupations took off in different directions. Lisa embarked on a career in publishing and writing for Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. I accepted a position in vaccine clinical research at Merck & Co., Inc.

My husband’s job uprooted us from Philadelphia to San Antonio, and we finally settled down in Denver, Colorado. After several years in pharmaceutical research and lots of travel, I took a risk, left industry and began working for a small start-up education company that provided medical simulation training to health care professionals. We developed interactive clinical scenarios around patient disease management. Given her clinical expertise in the MICU, I reached out to Lisa to author several sepsis case studies for us. These cases served as the basis for the critical care curriculum used to train thousands of practitioners across the country. It was wonderful to work with Lisa again and to reconnect after so many years.

Balancing family with a career became more difficult after the birth of my second son, and I decided to take some time off from work to raise my two boys. It was a wonderful four-year hiatus that I will always cherish.  Toward the tail end of that break, Lisa had come to Denver to attend a nursing conference. We met for lunch, and I shared with her my desire to return to work. She remembered our conversation and called me a year later with a job offer, as her responsibilities and workload had grown tremendously. I was grateful to have the opportunity to jump back into the workforce, utilizing both my writing and clinical skills. Today, we collaborate on many nursing topics to provide educational resources to millions of nurses around the world.

It is hard to believe that it has been over 20 years since Lisa and I graduated with our bachelor degrees from Penn. I truly believe that it was fate for us to meet and reconnect after college. While we are not at the bedside full-time today, we are still contributing to the nursing profession in very meaningful and impactful ways. Nursing certainly opens up a world of opportunities, but it is up to each individual to take full advantage of them. Personally, there is no doubt that college provided me with an incredible education, but it is the friendships that I made that truly changed my life. For those of you going back to school this fall, enjoy every moment and cherish the people you meet as they may prove to be as important, if not more, that the lessons you receive in the classroom.

Myrna B. Schnur, RN, MSN 
 
Posted: 9/12/2016 7:40:42 AM by Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP | with 0 comments

Categories: Education & Career


Mid-Year Update on My Nursing Care Plan

I hope that some of you have been using My Nursing Care Plan to help you achieve your professional goals and make self-care a high priority. Here’s an update on how I’ve been doing.

Meeting My Professional Requirements

Me-with-nursing-licenses.JPG

Well, even as a clinical editor and being very involved with sharing nursing continuing education activities and attending Lippincott Nursing Conferences, I’ve stayed true to my tendency to procrastinate! With an April 30th license renewal deadline, I completed my CE requirements just in time on April 25th. Fortunately, I did get my renewal done in time and avoided fees, however, I don’t recommend cutting it so close!

I have better intentions to keep up with my CE requirements over the next renewal cycle, though, and have already used My Planner to plan upcoming CE activities. Also, I’ll be attending both National Conference for Nurse Practitioners and Nursing Management Congress this fall. I feel like I’m off to a good start!

Being a Lifelong Learner in Nursing

At this point in my career, conference attendance and keeping up with my reading of the latest research in nursing and health care is my main avenue for lifelong learning. In the past, my specialty certifications included CCRN (Acute/Critical Care Nursing) and WHNP-BC (Women’s Health Care Nurse Practitioner). I know that when I return to clinical practice, I will become certified in whatever specialty my career takes me next.
licenses.jpg
With regard to membership in a professional nursing organization, I’ve taken my own advice and rejoined the American Nurses Association, as well as the Pennsylvania State Nurses Association. There has never been a more important time to show your dedication to our profession and I encourage you all to get involved. If you are involved with publishing in nursing, I encourage you to join the International Academy of Nursing Editors (INANE). I’ve been a member for years and it’s a great network of nurse authors, editors, and publishers – plus, it’s free to join!

Also, returning to school is definitely in the cards for me in the future. While I know the time will never be perfect, I’m just waiting for it to be a little better! I’ll keep you posted!

Maintaining Work-Life Balance

This part of the care plan has been a little trickier for me, and I wonder if you feel the same? As nurses, we are so used to taking care of others, that self-care is often less of a priority. I am happy to report that since the beginning of 2016, I’ve had a physical, including my mammogram and some other screening tests. I’ve also been working with my primary care provider and a specialist to diagnose and manage a chronic cough and shortness of breath (likely post-viral or adult-onset asthma).

I’m also getting out there and walking and doing my best to eat healthy, which is not always easy with a teenage son who has high-caloric needs to keep up with his sports. My next goal is to add some weight training to help maintain and improve bone density, which we know is critical for women as we get older.
And as for “me time” and managing stress, scheduling time for things I enjoy (reading and gardening, especially) and keeping them on the calendar definitely has helped. I admit that sometimes those times get pushed aside for other responsibilities, but as long as I keep trying and do my best, it’s better than my previous attempts.

How about you? What have you been up to? What’s been the most challenging part of the care plan for you? And, if you have any advice for me, I’d appreciate your support! 
 
Posted: 6/24/2016 10:15:04 PM by Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP | with 3 comments

Categories: Continuing EducationInspirationEducation & Career


Advance your Nursing Career with Wolters Kluwer

wk-logo.bmpAre you looking to advance your nursing career by either writing for a nursing journal or reviewing the work of other nurses? Medical publishing is a vast and growing industry, and we need experienced nurses who are looking to advance their own career and the nursing profession as a whole by creating content and evaluating the content of others. 

Right now, Wolters Kluwer is seeking freelance clinical editors for Lippincott Procedures and Lippincott Advisor. Lippincott Procedures hosts over 1,600 evidence-based procedures used by nurses and other health care personnel caring for patients in acute, long-term, and ambulatory care settings worldwide. Lippincott Advisor houses a variety of entries in categories, such diseases, signs and symptoms, diagnostic tests, healthcare acquired conditions, sentinel events, and more. We need clinical editors to ensure that assigned product entries are current, accurate, and evidence based. Learn more about this opportunity and the application process. 

Wolters Kluwer also publishes over 50 Lippincott nursing journals seeking credible nurses to submit journal articles to be published. These journals, including American Journal of Nursing, Computers Informatics Nursing, and  Nursing2016 Critical Care, are interested in hearing from you and learning more about your ideas for upcoming journal issues. Read more about How to Write for Our Nursing Journals

 
Posted: 4/11/2016 2:24:53 PM by Cara Gavin | with 3 comments

Categories: Education & Career


Maintaining Work-Life Balance [Infographic]

It can get complicated to juggle our personal and professional lives. This infographic will help you take a closer look at what you need to do to keep yourself healthy – physically, mentally, and emotionally. 
 

Maintaining Work-Life Balance in Nursing

Use My Nursing Care Plan for 2016 for a full look at assessing, planning, and implementing your goals for the year ahead!  

More Resources:
Meeting My Professional Requirements [Infographic]
Being a Lifelong Learner in Nursing [Infographic]

 

Add this infographic to your website by copying and pasting the following embed code:

Posted: 2/11/2016 10:18:12 PM by Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP | with 6 comments

Categories: InspirationEducation & Career


Setting and meeting goals

The secret to getting ahead is getting started ~ Mark Twain

setting and meeting goals in nursingAs nurses, there are many different roads we take on our journey to where we are now professionally. We all have different starting points and are currently at different places on this professional road. Similarly, there is immense variation in how we set and achieve our goals. There are volumes of literature on goal setting and achievement and the methods are not a one-size-fits-all formula. The key to successful goal management is figuring out what works for you, being honest with yourself about what your current and future goals are and coming up with a plan to achieve what you set out to do. Personality, life circumstances, and family-work balance all play roles in how we set and achieve goals, as well as our motivation to accomplish them.

Personally, I began my professional career in medical research with a degree in the sciences. I quickly determined that I wanted to interact with patients rather than study them from inside a room (my project involved taking measurements on carotid arteries [recorded loops on VHS] – in a dark room – as part of a cardiovascular research project). When I came to this realization, I organized my first five-year plan with a goal of becoming a nurse. I applied to and was accepted to a nursing program. I went on to receive my BSN and subsequently my MSN, which I completed in 2001 with the help of a National Health Service Corp Scholarship. I began working at a Federally Qualified Healthcare Center as a Family Nurse Practitioner. and after fulfilling my commitment to the scholarship, I was able to do a loan repayment program at the same health center. Within five years, I had all of my undergraduate and nursing loans payed off. Using the five-year framework allows for short and long-term goal setting with some flexibility factored in for the unexpected. While I personally work better with this flexibility, others may find more success with a stricter plan; this is where we need to be honest with ourselves and come up with a method that works best.

Fast forward eight years. Following a job transition, I was offered a position working in an ICU as a nurse practitioner. Although this was not in my original plans, and well out of my comfort zone, the opportunity was one that I could not pass up and presented an exciting new challenge. Around this same time, the Consensus model for APRN regulation: Licensure, accreditation, certification, and education (APRN Consensus Work Group, 2008) was released. This landmark publication for NP practice essentially recommended that NPs practice in the discipline/setting for which they were educated and certified. Although this seems straight forward, NP history is one whose roots began in primary care with evolution to the acute care setting. Educational programs for acute care NPs were introduced later in the historical timeline, and the fact is that there are many primary care NPs practicing in hospitals. So now, with no plans to leave the ICU, my current five-year plan includes completion of a post-master’s program to become certified as an adult-gerontological acute care nurse practitioner. This was an adjustment I needed to make, but it is a great opportunity to improve my skills and my job performance.
reach for the stars in nursing
I mentioned the flexibility to my plans earlier. There was an approximately five-year period in my life (i.e. when my children were infants) when I struggled to keep up with my plan, or rather, I had no plan! Memories of these years include crunching to find online CME and overnight expressing my license applications and sometimes struggles to just get through the day. For me, despite being a competent nurse at work, I found it overwhelming trying to figure out parenting and how to be a working mom. The learning curve of parenting and navigating the work-life balance was steep. Eventually, I was able to get back on track. Moving forward, I have reset my five-year plan once again (it’s a moving target). I hope to complete the acute care NP program in December 2016 then take and pass (fingers crossed) the exam in the spring of 2017. After that, I may try to teach, or possibly consider a DNP or PhD program.

I have not done extensive research from an academic or literature perspective on goal setting, but I do know that there are many successful methods for those that have difficulty with a flexible plan or prefer a more established format. For myself, it has been immensely helpful to take time, every so often, to reflect on where I am and where I would like to be. NursingCenter’s blog post, My Nursing Care Plan for 2016, provides an excellent resource for some of our requirements to keep up our professional obligations. Because in addition to our professional goal, there are tasks that we need to complete to stay current and licensed.

How do you like to set and achieve your goals? Has anyone found a more standard goal setting process that works for you? Please share your experiences with us!
 
Megan Doble, MSN, RN, CRNP
 
Reference:
APRN Consensus Work Group & the National Council of State Board of Nursing APRN Advisory Group. (July 7, 2008). Consensus Model for APRN Regulation: Licensure, Accreditation, Certification, & Education. 
Posted: 2/9/2016 9:35:45 PM by Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP | with 2 comments

Categories: InspirationEducation & Career


Being a Lifelong Learner in Nursing [Infographic]

Lifelong learning is essential for your professional development and to ensure evidence-based patient care and improve outcomes. Use this infographic to help you stay on track and meet your goals!
 
lifelong learning in nursing 
 
Use My Nursing Care Plan for 2016 for a full look at assessing, planning, and implementing your goals for the year ahead!  
 

Add this infographic to your website by copying and pasting the following embed code:

Posted: 2/6/2016 5:44:19 AM by Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP | with 3 comments

Categories: Continuing EducationInspirationEducation & Career


Meeting My Professional Requirements [Infographic]

It can be overwhelming to keep track of license and certification expiration dates and continuing education requirements for renewal. This infographic will help you stay on track to meet your professional requirements. 
 
meeting my professional nursing requirements

Use My Nursing Care Plan for 2016 for a full look at assessing, planning, and implementing your goals for the year ahead! 
 
 

Add this infographic to your website by copying and pasting the following embed code:

Posted: 1/31/2016 7:07:57 AM by Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP | with 0 comments

Categories: Continuing EducationInspirationEducation & Career


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