1. Lal, M. Maureen MSN, RN


In this month's Magnet Perspectives column, the director of the Magnet Recognition Program(R) highlights the program staff and leadership at ANCC responsible for the Magnet(R) Program.


Article Content

We are often asked, "How do you get Magnet Recognition(R)?" My 1st response is always: it is not about doing something to achieve Magnet(R). Magnet is the cherry on top when the right structures and processes are in place. Magnet provides a framework; how it is operationalized is up to the organization. Behind the success of Magnet are dedicated and knowledgeable staff who are available for counsel and support.

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Magnet Program Staff and Leadership

It is important to know who we are. The Magnet Program staff consists of the following:


* Magnet Program specialists provide logistical support for the Magnet Recognition Program(R). They serve as operations specialists to applicants, commissioners, appraisers, and program office staff using communication, organization, and quality control skills.


* Senior Magnet Program analysts (SMPAs) are nurses who provide independent content expertise and analysis for the Magnet Recognition Program through working with applicants, commissioners, appraisers, Magnet organizations, Magnet Program staff, and ANCC staff. Each region is assigned an analyst. They are the best resource to support your Magnet journey. To find your analysts, visit


* Senior analyst, data systems, and project management are the experts on the Magnet data systems, including ADAM and ADAMplus and the Demographic Data Collection Tool.



The leadership team consists of the assistant director, Magnet operations; assistant director, Magnet appraisers and program support; director, Magnet Recognition Program; the vice president, Magnet Recognition Program and Pathway to Excellence(R); and the chief nursing officer (CNO), ANA Enterprise, and ANA Enterprise chief executive officer (CEO).


Eligibility Criteria and Application Process

Eligibility criteria for application include having a CNO as the individual responsible for nursing practice throughout the organization, regardless of reporting structure. They must have a minimum of a master's degree; if the master's degree is not in nursing, then either the baccalaureate or a higher degree must be in nursing. Assistant vice presidents, directors, and managers must have a degree in nursing (baccalaureate or higher) for initial applicants including up to 2 years prior to the document submission date. Documents are accepted 5 times a year, the 1st business day of February, April, June, August, and October. Several documents are required with the application: CNO's curriculum vitae, current facility organizational chart showing the CNO and nursing's relationship to the entire facility, and the current nursing organizational chart. Applicants should include all areas where nursing is practiced. Also included is a list of the externally managed database(s) used for nurse satisfaction, patient satisfaction, and nurse-sensitive indicators; an attestation letter from the institutional review board; and the nurse leadership education and reporting table. The items are requested to support the organization's success with the designation. Each item is reviewed by program office staff, and if there are any concerns, the organization is contacted. For many, this may be the 1st of many conversations held with a Magnet Program analyst.


Once the application is processed, the organization receives notification of the specialist and analyst assigned for the submission. Several resources become available after acceptance of the application; membership to the Magnet Learning Community(R) including access to the Critical Information Webinar and the discussion board; and the ability to attend In Pursuit of Excellence: Magnet Program Guidance(R), a 2-day program led by the SMPAs. As coaches, the analysts will walk you through each source of evidence and the key elements. Organizations that are not ready to apply can gain access to the resources through the Magnet Pre-Intent Membership Program. The program is designed to assist organizations with high-level contact and additional resources to further understand the 2019 Magnet Application Manual requirements.


Starting in February 2020, all organizations are required to use the ADAM or ADAMplus data repository system. The system was developed to provide increased security for document submission and allows users to store, create, and upload organizational narratives and evidence over the timeline leading to document submission. The ADAM document library will allow multiple users to store and manage documents simultaneously on the same account. ADAMplus provides a breakdown to ensure the key elements are addressed.


Magnet Appraisers

As a peer-reviewed program, the Magnet appraisers are integral to the process. The Magnet appraisers must have a minimum of a master's degree; if the master's degree is not in nursing, then either the baccalaureate or a higher degree must be in nursing. The size of the team is dependent on the size and structure of the organization. Each appraiser has undergone extensive training and completes exercises to ensure rater and interrater reliability. Typically, the team of appraisers has 3 or 4 members. The appraisers each conduct an individual review and then have a consensus call. They develop a synopsis for each source of evidence. This is reviewed by the analyst to ensure consistency and ultimately the Commission on Magnet as the final decision makers.


A request for Additional Documentation is an opportunity for organizations to clarify or to provide missing information. The appraisers provide a request for the information; the SMPA will be the conduit between the appraisers and the organization. The Magnet Program director is encouraged to set up regular calls with the SMPA and address any questions that arise.


The site visit is an opportunity not only to showcase the examples that were provided in the document but also to validate, verify, and amplify the enculturation of every source of evidence throughout the organization and the value of nursing. Of course, all of the hard work comes to fruition during the notification call from the Chair of the Commission! Magnet Recognition is proof the organization has a culture that promotes and sustains nurse satisfaction and positive patient outcomes including nursing excellence.