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Thank you for joining us in sunny Phoenix, Arizona, for the 2002 INS Annual Meeting and Industrial Exhibition. Since last year's meeting in Indianapolis, where INS unveiled its new name and logo, we have moved forward with enthusiasm to meet our organizational goals. I am pleased to review INS' many accomplishments from the past year, which have resulted from the hard work and dedication of INS leaders, staff, partners, and of course, members like you.



Despite challenging financial times and the overall healthcare environment, INS experienced a slight increase in membership. As of this year's Annual Meeting, INS currently has 5300 members whose backgrounds are as varied as the practice settings in which they work. According to recent demographic data, 35% of INS members hold a bachelor's degree, 30% an associate degree, 27% a diploma, and 8% hold a master's degree. Practice settings cover a wide range, with hospitals (43%), homecare (35%), and pharmacy (8%) comprising the largest number. The majority of our members are staff nurses (50%) or are in management positions (32%). Fifty percent of our members maintain the Certified Registered Nurse Infusion (CRNI) credential, and a strong 85% of INS members directly purchase, influence the purchase of, or make recommendations for infusion products. With members who have such influence in the infusion specialty, INS will endeavor to meet their professional and educational needs.


INS welcomes international members representing 29 countries. Increased interest from foreign nurses, especially for INS publications like the Infusion Nursing Standards of Practice, Policies and Procedures for Infusion Nursing, and Infusion Therapy in Clinical Practice, demonstrate that the international community is looking to INS to lead the way in infusion excellence. As we move forward, we will continually evaluate membership services we provide to meet members' needs by drawing on Allegiance for Associations surveys. These surveys, conducted by an outside research group, support our marketing efforts and help us to focus on the information our members find most helpful.


Thus far, members have told us through these surveys that the Journal of Infusion Nursing, Standards of Practice, and National Nursing Network continue to be the most beneficial services we offer. We hope to increase membership by implementing campaigns aimed at those benefits. Mailing campaigns directed at nonmembers who purchased either the Policies and Procedures or the Standards of Practice are in effect, along with a campaign to attract nonmember CRNIs, and the Member-to-Member campaign-a plan that enlists the help of current members in attracting new members into INS.



INS' marketing plans include new strategies to promote awareness of the organization and the specialty practice of infusion nursing. Some of INS' recent marketing efforts have yielded increased nondues revenue from the sale of INS and CRNI pins and IV Nurse Day items. Moving forward, we will continue to emphasize INS' role as the leader in infusion nursing by offering benefits and services to members that they cannot get elsewhere. Exciting educational programs and resources, meetings, and publications will be the core of INS' marketing strategy.


Articles contributed to other nursing magazines and peer-reviewed journals underscore our position as the leader in the specialty. This year, INS Education Manager Deborah Benvenuto authored two articles in ADVANCE for Nurses magazine entitled "Bloodborne Pathogens" and "Platelet Transfusion Therapy." An article appeared in the New England edition of Nursing Spectrum that I coauthored with Sandra Solomon, MS, and Gregory J. Stoddard, MPH, MBA, entitled "The Infusion Nurse: A Robust Concept Reemerges." Other articles awaiting publication include another that I coauthored with Deborah Benvenuto and INS Nurse Educator Anne Malloy entitled "Flushing Vascular Access Devices (VADs)." The article is expected some time this summer in Home Healthcare Nurse.



The sales of INS publications continue to be strong. In addition to members purchasing the Standards of Practice and Policies and Procedures, many purchases are coming from nonmembers. The second edition of the Policies and Procedures made its debut at this year's Annual Meeting. The second edition is not just a light revision of the original, but contains new procedures on administration of IV push, administration of a first dose, the use of blood and fluid warmers, and an entirely new chapter on pediatrics, an area in which many of our members have sought guidance.


Other INS publications continue to be successful: We have been pleased with the ongoing success of our textbook, Infusion Therapy in Clinical Practice 2nd edition. This comprehensive guide has sold well since publication in February 2001 and remains an invaluable reference for the specialty practice. The Peripherally Inserted Central Catheter (PICC) Education Module was updated and revised this past year to reflect current practice and INS' name change, and the Core Curriculum for Intravenous Nursing also will enter the revision process for the publication of the third edition. INS is working with our publisher, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, to determine the date of publication.



The Journal of Infusion Nursing continues to flourish as our flagship publication. INS solicits manuscripts for publication from members, meeting speakers, nursing school faculty and students, and other nursing professionals outside the organization. We wish to encourage members to share their knowledge by publishing their data and research because it is the best means by which to impact or change infusion practices and validate existing practices. It also is a way to gain professional recognition from colleagues and employers, as well as personal satisfaction. The INS publications department assists authors with their manuscripts, and this year, included a Publications Focus Group at the Annual Meeting that offered guidance to potential authors. The Annual Meeting also featured a professional development session entitled "Business Writing for the Healthcare Professional" delivered by Lisa Stepanski, PhD, which covered the specifics of writing for professional publications.



Our members continue to read our newsletter cover-to-cover. Newsline is a pipeline of information on timely issues, and offers yet another opportunity for professionals who wish to publish their work, especially shorter-length articles. The newsletter continues to feature regular columns by noted professionals like Michael Cohen and Debbi Lindgren-Clendenen, along with the President's Message, IV P.U.M.P., and Frequently Asked Questions from readers.



In an effort to augment the educational tools that we offer, INS is in the process of developing a CD-ROM Education Module that will address the principles of infusion therapy, including the nine core content areas and infusion competencies. This teaching tool will benefit all nurses who deliver infusion care.



Despite the tragedy on September 11th, INS was able to continue with educational opportunities that were planned for the fall of 2001. It was amazing to see the commitment of the attendees arriving in Dallas for the November 2001 National Academy of Infusion Therapy and One-Day program sponsored by Bayer, "Immunoglobulin Therapies: Impact on Nursing Care." Both meetings were well attended. This year, Ethicon Endo-Surgery will provide a continuing education grant for the One-Day program, "Current Issues Impacting Technology and Infusion Systems Management," to be held in Miami Beach. The November 15th program will precede the National Academy weekend program on November 16th and 17th. We look forward to these educational offerings in which nurses can earn contact hours and recertification units toward the CRNI credential.


In another first-time move, INS offered a special One-Day meeting in February 2002 in Las Vegas. We were delighted with the success of the special program "Healthcare Worker Safety Issues in Infusion Therapy," which was sponsored by BD, and held in conjunction with the National Home Infusion Association's (NHIA) Annual Convention. This was the first project with the NHIA since INS entered into a collaborative partnership with the organization in 2001. We have continued to foster this relationship by offering the Home Infusion Focus sessions at this year's Annual Meeting. These special professional development sessions were developed by both INS and NHIA.



Participation in a local chapter of INS is one of the best ways to get involved in shaping the infusion specialty. With 52 chapters currently in the United States, these representatives of INS are vital to promoting the society's mission by offering their own educational programs and networking opportunities. Regional liaisons, who are appointed by the Board of Directors, communicate with chapter presidents on a regular basis and act as a conduit between the Board and National Office. To offer additional support this year, we will have a Chapter Development Liaison whose role will be to provide guidance for chapters that are still in development so they can reach full chapter status. Last October, I had the pleasure of presenting "Infusion Practice: A World of Difference," at the Connecticut Chapter's Annual Seminar. As always, it was inspiring to see the enthusiasm and passion the INS members exude. If you are a member of INS and would like to become more involved, I urge you to contact your local INS chapter.



Just as chapters support INS by connecting with members locally, our committee members have proven instrumental in the organization's success through their ability to share their experience on specific issues. They provide invaluable knowledge and clinical expertise to support strategic initiatives. We are grateful to the National Council on Education (NCOE) for its efforts in developing high-caliber educational programs and the Nominations Committee for identifying potential candidates for INS leadership positions.


There have been changes in the structure of other INS committees this year. The Alternate Site Practice Committees, which contribute to each issue of Newsline, have been restructured: the Homecare and Ambulatory Infusion Center Committees have been consolidated and the Long-term Care Committee will remain a separate committee. As part of the new structure, they have been charged with developing a patient teaching documentation tool and a criteria measurement tool to validate clinical competency. In other changes, INS has re-established the Clinical Practice Committee, whose first assignment is to develop a blueprint for the implementation and justification of an infusion specialist resource nurse or an infusion therapy team.



Part of INS' plan to reach out to other infusion professionals and support our mission has involved the formation of strategic partnerships. Last year, INS partnered with Primedia, a distribution company of educational programs, which delivers its products by satellite to approximately 100 hospitals and 1000 long-term care facilities. With INS' help, Primedia created three educational programs in 2001. In April 2002, INS contributed two more, "Infusion Devices: PICCs and Midlines" and "Infusion Pumps and Preventing Free Flow."


Another partnership that proved fruitful this year was with the National Student Nurses Association (NSNA). I delivered a presentation on a panel "Finding Your Niche in Nursing" at the NSNA midyear meeting in Reno, Nevada, and I have since been invited back as a keynote speaker for the Arizona NSNA chapter for their Annual Convention in October 2002. INS also was a sponsor of two focus group sessions at the NSNA's 50th Anniversary Convention this past April, where Roxanne Perucca's presentation to the nursing school faculty, "Envisioning Education to Promote Infusion Excellence," and Brenda Dugger's presentation to the nursing students, "All Nurses Are Infusion Nurses" were well received.


Nursing2002, a journal published by Lippincott Williams and Wilkins, hosted the Nursing2002 Symposium held in Las Vegas on April 2-5, 2002. In conjunction with the Academy of Medical-Surgical Nurses (AMSN) and the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN), this was INS' first time endorsing the meeting. We saw a lot of interest at the booth regarding the Standards of Practice, Policies and Procedures, and certification. We look forward to continuing our collaborative partnerships with these organizations and exploring new projects that will promote the infusion specialty in new markets.



In September 2001, I met with leaders of national nursing organizations at the "Call to the Nursing Profession" summit in Washington, DC, to address the ongoing nurse staffing shortages that are plaguing hospitals and healthcare facilities nationwide. The aim of the meeting was to devise a comprehensive plan to ensure that patients continue to receive safe, quality nursing care and to retain current nurses and recruit others into the profession. During the meeting, leaders discussed 10 key issues or domains that concern nurses, the profession, and the public. Those domains are: work environment, economic value, education, legislation/regulation/policy, delivery systems/nursing practice models, diversity, recruitment/retention, professional/nursing culture, public relations/communications, and leadership/planning. Each nursing organization involved will make an effort to address these issues as they relate to their mission.



INS contributed to the new Guideline for Prevention of Intravascular Catheter Related Infection that will be published later this spring by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Using a multidisciplinary approach, the CDC tapped INS and other members from professional organizations representing the disciplines of critical care medicine, infectious diseases, health infection control, surgery, anesthesiology, interventional radiology, pulmonary medicine, pediatrics, and nursing. We are pleased to announce that the new guideline's recommendation for the use of specially trained infusion personnel for the placement and maintenance of IV catheters was upgraded to Category 1A, which means that the CDC now strongly recommends this standard of care in clinical practice. We in the infusion specialty should view this as long-awaited validation for the high level of expertise and safety that trained infusion nurses offer their patients.


INS was also active in shaping guidelines for other infusion-related organizations. We were one of the participating bodies in the review of the Outpatient Parenteral Antimicrobial Therapy (OPAT) guidelines, and also reviewed and submitted comments to the American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (ASPEN) on their standards of practice. Sharon Weinstein and I represented INS at the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) shareholders meeting in Baltimore, Maryland. The meeting focused on health and safety issues and input provided will be used in a national survey of occupational health and safety hazards and exposure.


In October 2001, Brenda Dugger and I presented "Bloodstream Infections: Nosocomial Disasters" at a meeting convened in Dallas by Partners for Patient Safety (P4PS) and hosted by VHA, Inc., and the National Patient Safety Foundation (NPSF). The presentation, which was one of only 24 selected from a pool of 131 abstracts, demonstrated the influence infusion nurses have on patient safety and positive outcomes, and the role INS has in providing resources to support infusion practices.


As an organizational affiliate of the American Nurses Association (ANA), Roxanne Perucca will represent INS at the ANA's 2002 Biennial Convention that will be held in Phildelphia from June 27 to July 2 this year. Brenda Dugger will deliver a presentation entitled "The Cost of Infusion Therapy: Clinical Expertise, Complications, and Legal Issues," at the convention.



In June 2001, Sharon Weinstein and I traveled to Copenhagen, Denmark for the International Council of Nurses (ICN) meeting. Along with Sharon Weinstein and several foreign colleagues, I presented an abstract entitled "International Efforts at Reducing Sharps Injuries," and sat on a panel sponsored by Ethicon Endo-Surgery Vascular Access entitled "An International Approach to Medication Safety: Effect on Patient and Caregiver."


Upon returning from the ICN meeting, I traveled to Singapore on an educational grant from the Pall Corporation, where I delivered a presentation at a day-long seminar on infusion therapy. I also had the opportunity to make several hospital visits and see the delivery of infusion care in that country, and experience the interest the nurses had for the specialty practice.


I just returned from another trip to the Far East recently. I had the opportunity to travel to China with sponsorship provided by an educational grant from BD, where my presentation entitled "Professional Development of the Infusion Nurse" was heard by approximately 1000 nurses in several cities in China. I met with the Executive Director of the Hong Kong Nurses Association and explained the importance of infusion nursing as a specialty practice. This was my third visit to China, and it amazes me to watch the interest and momentum for infusion nursing building each time I return.


I am also pleased to announce that there are now two formal INS affiliations in China-in Beijing and Shanghai. Due to the political structure in the country, specialty nursing organizations must be sanctioned by the provincial nursing association who in return must get approval from the Ministry of Health for the affiliation to be official. On this recent trip, I had the honor of being one of the keynote speakers at the ceremony for the new INS-Shanghai affiliate.



I am happy to report that INS' office move went very smoothly when we relocated last year. With the lease expiring on our Cambridge, Massachusetts headquarters, we decided to take advantage of the changing real estate market around Boston and set up shop just south of the city in the suburb of Norwood. INS has realized significant financial savings as a result of the move.



The Infusion Nurses Certification Corporation (INCC), the testing arm of INS, deserves some special recognition this year. INCC's RN Exam Council has been working diligently to develop test questions, review the exam, and contribute the Test Your Knowledge articles for the Journal of Infusion Nursing. The Core Curriculum for Intravenous Nursing will be revised to reflect current infusion practices that were derived from the job analysis that was completed last year.


The INCC Board of Directors approved an additional CRNI recertification option last year. Other nursing organizations may now have their educational programs approved for up to five CRNI recertification units. Recertification units earned through CE tests in the Journal of Infusion Nursing are still a popular option for obtaining recertification units.


In an effort to support potential candidates, a CRNI certification information workshop was held just before the INS Business Meeting. The course, facilitated by Nancy Mortlock, CRNI, OCN, provided an overview of the development, content, format, guidelines, and preparation methods for the CRNI exam. In addition, a sample test was provided in the booth to familiarize potential candidates with the type of questions they would see on the exam.


CRNIs who would like to become involved in the creation of the CRNI exam are welcome to take part in this year's Item Writer's Workshop, to be held November 13-14, 2002 in Miami Beach, Florida. This is a great opportunity to work with members of our RN Exam Council and representatives of our testing agency, Applied Measurement Professionals (AMP). The 2-day course is structured so that the initial 4 hours are spent going over how exam questions are formed, referenced, and reviewed. Subsequent time is spent writing questions in all of the nine core content areas.


INCC made strides recently when the North Carolina Board of Nursing recognized it as one of their approved national credentialing bodies. Approval was based upon INCC meeting minimum requirements set forth by the state. The US Veterans Administration will now offer financial assistance to qualified candidates taking the CRNI exam. Veterans who qualify under the Montgomery GI Bill may seek reimbursement for the cost of exam through the VA's Licensing and Certification Benefit.


INCC has been actively involved as a member organization of the American Board of Nursing Specialties (ABNS), a membership organization for nursing certification bodies that advocates for consumer protection by establishing and maintaining standards on professional nursing certification. INCC Chair Maxine Perdue and I are members of the ABNS Awards Committee and I was elected to a 2-year term as Secretary-Treasurer of the ABNS Board of Directors. INCC is completing the submission procedure for accreditation of the CRNI exam by ABNS.


Each year at the Annual Meeting, we make time to recognize the importance of earning the CRNI credential. Monday evening's INCC Reception included an award for CRNI of the Year, which honors one exceptional nurse whose work in the infusion specialty has been outstanding. This year, we are proud to offer CRNI pins for nurses who want to show their colleagues and patients that they are highly trained specialists. INCC continues to send letters to thank employers who support certification, and publishing "CRNIs in Profile" in Newsline to spotlight those employers and nurses.



INS' Gardner Foundation also honored the accomplishments of extraordinary nurses by announcing the winners of this year's education and meeting scholarships at the reception. In the future, INS will continue to market the Foundation as a member benefit that supports the advancement of the infusion specialty and also continue its fundraising efforts.


As we look back over all we have accomplished in the last year, we should take a moment to remember that these strides would not have been possible without the hard work and dedication of INS leaders, staff, and our valued members. I would like to take this time to extend to all of you my thanks for your dedication and support of INS and the infusion specialty. With partners like you, INS is certain to remain the leader in the infusion specialty and continue our momentum for success.



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