1. Puetz, Belinda E. PhD, RN

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Recently, we conducted a "Quick Poll" on the Journal for Nurses in Staff Development (JNSD) Web site, asking visitors to the site to identify their level of involvement in the process of seeking Magnet status for an employing institution. According to the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC; 2011), Web site,


The Magnet Recognition Program(R) recognizes healthcare organizations for quality patient care, nursing excellence and innovations in professional nursing practice. Consumers rely on Magnet designation as the ultimate credential for high quality nursing. Developed by the American Nurses Credentialing Center, Magnet is the leading source of successful nursing practices and strategies worldwide.


For those of you who are unfamiliar with the Magnet Recognition Program, it was established in 1990 by the ANCC. The program was based on a study of work environments that attract and retain nurses who provide high-quality care. The characteristics of those environments were designated the "Forces of Magnetism." In 2011, the ANCC introduced a new vision and a new conceptual model that grouped the 14 Forces of Magnetism into five key components: Transformational Leadership; Structural Empowerment; Exemplary Professional Practice; New Knowledge, Innovations, and Improvements; and Empirical Outcomes.


Organizations wishing to obtain Magnet status must submit documentation of achievement of the 14 Forces of Magnetism for review and approval by the ANCC. Because of his or her extensive knowledge of the organization and the "reach" obtained by being in a pivotal educational role, the nursing professional development (NPD) specialist becomes a critical individual in the process. Often, it is the NPD specialist who is the "champion" of the Magnet journey.


A number of articles have been published in JNSD on the Magnet journey and the role of the NPD specialist in the process, and there have been presentations on the topic at the National Nursing Staff Development Organization (NNSDO) convention as well. So, I was curious about the level of involvement that NPD specialists have in the process.


The poll asked individuals to identify the extent of their involvement on a 5-point scale from Not at all involved-not seeking Magnet status to Involved to a great extent-leading the process. Over the short time the poll was posted on the Web site, 27 individuals responded. There is no way to calculate how many individuals visited the site over that time frame. I believe that the individuals who visit the site do so to view the content-the latest issue or the collections of articles on a specific topic. It is helpful when those visitors also respond to the polls that are posted; but not all do, I am sure.


Of the 27 who did respond, nine said they were not involved at all and their institution was not seeking Magnet recognition, although currently, about 6.5% of hospitals in the country have achieved Magnet designation. It is not known how many organizations are currently in the process. One was not involved but his or her institution was in the process.


Three were involved "to a minor extent," and because the poll does not allow for open-ended questions or responses, there is no way to know just what that minor involvement entails. The majority, or 12, were involved to a great extent as they were participating in the process, and two individuals were leading the process.


Obviously, this is not a scientific assessment of the involvement of NPD specialists in the Magnet program, but I think it is likely representative of the fact that NPD specialists often assume responsibilities in addition to those of an educational nature per se.


The NNSDO is involved in the Magnet program as an organization as well. The NNSDO was an exhibitor at the National Magnet Conference held in Baltimore, Maryland, in October this year. The organization and its journal are supportive of the NPD specialists' involvement in the Magnet recognition program, and our anecdotal evidence lends credibility to that assertion. Let me know what JNSD or the NNSDO can do to assist you in your Magnet efforts!




American Nurses Credentialing Center. (2011). Magnet Recognition Program(R). Retrieved from[Context Link]