Article Content

PCNA strives to increase opportunities for member involvement by inviting members to serve on committees, nominate board candidates, and suggest annual meeting speakers and topics. Through their active involvement, PCNA members have helped us to accomplish the following:


Two positions on the Board of Directors became available earlier this year. The members were asked to send their nominations and as a result, Jane Nelson Worel, MS, RN, and Lynne T. Braun, PhD, ANP, have been asked to join PCNA's Board of Directors. Both of these new board members bring excellent experience and insight to their positions.


Jane Nelson Worel currently serves as a nurse practitioner within the Preventive Cardiology Program at the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics in Madison, Wis. In her role, she manages the care of patients with complex hyperlipidemias, hypertension, diabetes, and metabolic syndrome. She is also involved in the development of UW's Women's Heart Health Program and is the exercise site coordinator for HF Action, a nationally funded multicenter heart failure and exercise study.


Jane has been a member of PCNA since 1995 and co-chair of the Great Plains Regional Chapter of PCNA since 2000. In addition, she has served on the Membership Committee and Regional Development Task Force for PCNA.


Lynne T. Braun has worked as a nurse practitioner/research associate at Chicago's Preventive Cardiology Center in the Rush Heart Institute and is a practitioner-teacher in the Department of Adult Health Nursing at Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Center since 1998 and 1980, respectively. Lynne is an established researcher, consultant, presenter, and author. She was co-investigator on a project entitled "A Couples Intervention for Cardiac Risk Reduction" from 1999 to 2003 and has also published many articles in journals such as the Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing and the American Journal of Hypertension.


Lynne has been a member of PCNA since 2001. She is a member of many other organizations including AHA, Sigma Theta Tau, American Academy of Nurse Practitioners, and Illinois Society of Advanced Practice Nurses. In 1996, Lynne was named a Fellow of the American Heart Association's Council on Cardiovascular Nursing.


PCNA welcomes both Jane and Lynne and appreciates all of the membership's support in nominating key leaders who will help carry out PCNA's important mission in the years to come.


The 2004 national symposium attendee evaluations were extremely informative and helpful when planning the 2005 symposium. From these we know that attendees felt the meeting was successful, both in the quality of speakers and the variety of topics that were presented. In an effort to further involve members, a call for 2005 national symposium topic suggestions was sent to all members via e-mail. This input assisted us in planning what we anticipate to be one of the best national symposiums yet!!


Member-based committees continue to meet regularly via conference calls and annually at the PCNA National Symposium to discuss membership, advocacy, abstract review processes, and chapter development.


PCNA is very fortunate to have a group of hardworking individuals on the Poster Abstract Review Committee, which is led by Jeri Allen, ScD, RN, FAAN, and comprised of Nancy Artinian, MSN, PhD, Meg Gulanick, PhD, RNC, CS, and Joan Fair, PhD, ANP.


The Membership Committee meets at the national symposium to discuss issues faced by nurse leaders in the field of cardiac/vascular prevention and disease management and what PCNA can do to provide members with opportunities to enhance their practice. This committee is made up of Janie Baranyay, MSN, RN, Susan D'Agostino, MS, RN, Susan Devers, MSN, RN, Deb Dunham, MSN, ARNP-CS, Brenda Foxen, BSN, RN, April Humphrey, MSN, ACNP, Kim Newlin, BS, RN, Michelle Nickolaus, MSN, CRNP, Joyce Ross, MSN, CRNP, Jane Nelson Worel, MS, RN, and chaired by Emma Groethe, MSN, CNS. The Scholarship Committee also plays a large part in the national symposium in planning the process by which to award scholarships. The members of this committee are Emma Groethe and Deb Oblak, RN.


The Advocacy Committee has been established to assure the best care for patients and establish the highest professional recognition possible for nurses working in CVD prevention. This committee is made up of chair, Suzy Hughes, MSN, RN, and members Abby Ensign, BA, BSN, Barbara Fletcher, MN, RN, FAAN, Janet Long, MSN, ACNP, Judith Potter, MSN, CRNP, and Terry Thomas, MSN, RN.


PCNA will soon be reaching out to members through an e-mail membership survey that will enable us to better understand who our members are, who they serve, and what they expect from PCNA. If you receive this survey, please share your thoughts and help us offer the most relevant services to our members.


Northeast Ohio Chapter Leader Shares Insights on PCNA

PCNA realizes the importance that chapters play within this organization and the challenges many chapters face in starting up and maintaining ongoing participation. To that end, we are sharing some highlights from a recent interview with Emma Groethe, one of the founding members of the Northeast Ohio Region PCNA Chapter.


Tell us about the leadership within your chapter. When Beki Angerstein and I started the chapter in 2000, we did not establish official leadership positions. We considered ourselves "unofficial leaders" of a motivated team of very committed regional PCNA members. Starting in 2004, we established formal leadership positions. The coordinator position, similar to president, provides overall leadership. It is currently held by Beki Angerstein. We also have a co-coordinator, who spends a year being groomed for the role of coordinator by setting up continuing education programs, conducting our business meetings, and getting to know the national office staff and other chapter leaders. This year, I am serving on the Leadership Committee and continue to serve as a mentor.


Tell us about the geography of your chapter. We cover a large geographic area that includes Cleveland and its related suburbs, Akron, Canton, Columbus, Sandusky, and Toledo as the other major cities. We have over 120 members who travel up to an hour to attend our meetings.


What format do you use for your meetings? Usually we meet three to four times a year, with one held at the National Meeting. About half are held on weeknights and half on Saturday mornings. On Saturdays we usually host a 1/2-day program that ends between 12 and 2 PM. The weeknight programs usually involve dinner and a business meeting. Generally around 30 members attend the weeknight dinner programs, with more like 50 to 75 people attending the Saturday morning symposiums.


Do non-PCNA members attend meetings/programs? Yes, I would say about 15% of those attending each meeting are not members. We encourage our members to bring their colleagues with them to introduce them to PCNA and to encourage joining both the national and regional chapters.


Do you provide CEs for all your programs? Who provides monetary support? We feel very fortunate that we are able to provide programs without cost to members. In fact, membership in regional chapters is free as long as you are a member of the national PCNA. Pharmaceutical and device company support with unrestricted educational grants cover the cost of program speakers, meals, and CE certificates. We apply for CEs from accredited providers to cover all educational levels of nursing.


What are some of the presentation topics that you have offered? Members want up-to-date information and practical tools related to new standards of care, innovative strategies for patient management, and education, medication, and lifestyle therapies. Last year we presented Saturday programs on the application of NCEP ATPIII cholesterol management guidelines via the "Mobile Lipid Clinic," new JNC-7 hypertension guidelines, and a train the trainer program ("Get Tough on Angina") for developing support programs for patients with chronic angina. This year, regional nurse practitioners presented programs on lipid subclasses and a new cardiac device. In 2002, nurse and physician experts presented on lipid phenotypes, complex lipid therapy, smoking cessation, and peripheral vascular disease; several local CHD risk reduction nurse managers presented their programs in an interactive session. We have had two nationally known speakers present new dietary guidelines.


What other formats have you used? We held our first Journal Club meeting at a weeknight dinner program at which members presented and led a discussion on fluvastatin and on progression of stenosis in collateral arteries. It was great fun.


Can you share some of your most satisfying experiences in serving as a chapter leader? I think it is seeing what can happen when nurses with a deep commitment to prevention and optimal management of cardiovascular disease come together as colleagues to develop and validate their vital role in CHD risk reduction. I enjoy working with and learning from colleagues in the process of chapter development. I have had an opportunity to network with colleagues from across the country.


What have you found to be the greatest challenges to organizing and running a chapter? I would say presenting and organizing meetings around nurses' busy schedules. Trying to bring people together who are coming from a variety of clinical settings and working to develop programs that meet diverse needs and interests is difficult. A survey of our members indicates that early evenings and out by 8 PM on Tuesday or Thursday and 1/2-day programs on Saturdays work best for them.


Can you comment on how much attention you see being devoted to prevention in the Ohio area? I would say a great deal of attention across all settings!! The focus is a bit different between outpatient, inpatient, and cardiac rehabilitation but because cardiovascular disease affects so many organs and leads to other medical conditions, there is a great deal of interest from primary care, specialty care, and quality management areas. For example, a urologist who implemented a cardiovascular disease clinic spoke at our national meeting about the link between erectile dysfunction and endothelial dysfunction.


Finally, would you share what you believe are the benefits of PCNA chapters to cardiovascular nurses today? This is easy-I can easily list them: networking with colleagues, validating the important work we do as CV nurses, developing leadership skills at the local and national level, and being informed of opportunities for leadership, such as the poster presentations at the annual symposium.


In the past, the PCNA Newsletter kept members abreast of the activities of the organization. Now we use the website and these pages in the Journal. Most members truly value the "Tools Guide" and other educational materials that offer practical ideas. The chapters encourage collaboration and multidisciplinary teams working together. I think that is appropriate. The involvement in chapters and membership in PCNA gives credibility to our profession. I am proud to be part of this premier organization.


Stop Smoking Updates

On May 27, Surgeon General Richard H. Carmona released the 2004 report on smoking and health. The four major findings of this latest report are as follows:


* Smoking harms nearly every major organ of the body, often in profound ways, causing many diseases and significantly diminishing the health of smokers in general.


* Quitting smoking has immediate as well as long-term benefits. Within minutes and hours after smokers inhale that last cigarette, their bodies begin a series of changes that continue for years. Among these health improvements are a drop in heart rate, improved circulation, and reduced risk of heart attack, lung cancer, and stroke. By quitting smoking today, a smoker can have many healthier tomorrows.


* Smoking so-called low-tar and low-nicotine cigarettes provides no clear benefit to health.


* The list of diseases caused by smoking has been expanded to include abdominal aortic aneurysm; acute myeloid leukemia; cataract; periodontitis; pneumonia; and cancers of the cervix, kidney, pancreas, and stomach.



Visit for the full report and a new animated website for the public that explains the health risks of smoking as well as the benefits of smoking cessation.


This Surgeon General's report focuses on active smoking. A recent publication in British Medical Journal sheds additional light on the growing body of evidence around the health effects of environmental smoke.1 A Montana town had a ban on cigarette smoking in public places for a 6-month period in 2002. (The legislation was overturned after 6 months.) The area chronicled a 60% decrease in hospital admission for acute myocardial infarction during this smoke-free period. Although the numbers are quite small, the study has drawn much interest in the public health community as additional evidence regarding the impact of secondhand or environmental smoke.


There are countless websites and national groups offering materials to help in the fight against smoking, especially those available through the Office of the Surgeon General. One of those websites is Tobacco Free Nurses. This initiative is funded by the Robert Woods Johnson Foundation and is the first national program focused on ensuring that the nursing profession is prepared to actively promote health by reducing nurses' barriers to involvement in tobacco control. And more importantly, it works to help our own nurses and student nurses to stop smoking. This organization aims to support and assist smoking cessation efforts of nurses and students, to provide tobacco control resources for use in patient education, and to enhance the culture of nurses as leaders and advocates for a smoke-free society. This national initiative has partnered with QuitNet, an organization that has helped thousands quit smoking through its unique, online community of smokers and ex-smokers. There is a special nurses section to assist nurses who smoke available for free. As their ad proclaims: "Tobacco Free Nurses is a one-stop shop for all nurses, especially nurses who want to help their patients quit smoking and nurses who want to quit themselves." This group also sponsored its first National Nursing Leadership Task Force on Tobacco Control in March, a summit that brought together 21 leading nursing organizations to strategize on tobacco control. Visit for educational materials and more information.

Figure. No caption a... - Click to enlarge in new windowFigure. No caption available.



1. Sargent RP, Shepard RM, Glantz SA. Reduced incidence of admissions for myocardial infarction associated with public smoking ban: before and after study. BMJ 2004;328:977-980. [Context Link]

Tell a Friend About Women and Heart Disease


Tell a Friend


About Women and Heart Disease


The word is out that cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in women. Several top organizations have banded together to spread the message. The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), American Heart Association (AHA), and The National Coalition for Women with Heart Disease began the awareness program with its "Red Dress" displays and "pins" to be worn. PCNA joined forces with its "Tell a Friend" about Women and Heart Disease Campaign.


PCNA's campaign is all about touching the lives of other women. As nurses, we have a gift of teaching and influencing others. PCNA members are being asked to find an audience with whom to speak about women and heart disease. This can be an informal meeting or given as a slide show. Consider such venues as having a potluck dinner party where everyone is required to bring a low-fat dish to share, going to your children's school and speaking with the faculty over lunch, having a brown bag at your place of employment, planning a session at your place of worship as part of the after-service gathering, or using your book club to spend 15 to 20 minutes to convey this important message. Be creative and let PCNA know how you've done it. The PCNA website ( provides a free slide presentation and script that has already been prepared for you. Sign the pledge card and commit to influencing the lives of women in your community. Help us reach 10,000 women in 2004!! To date, 12 programs have been presented to a total of 469 women. Be sure to also review the AHA Scientific Statement on "Evidenced-Based Guidelines for CV Disease Prevention in Women."

Need a Career Boost?


Certification in Cardiac/Vascular Nursing can be one of the most important career advances you can make. It can facilitate advancement opportunities within your organization, or better your position as you seek new challenges. Many organizations offer certified nurses higher salaries and other benefits. But what is usually most rewarding is knowing that you have mastered a concentrated area of practice, and boasting your board certification through the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC)-nursing's professional organization.


ANA's Cardiac/Vascular exam was developed for nurses who provide comprehensive care to individuals diagnosed with, or at risk for, cardiac/vascular events. Cardiac/vascular practice occurs across a variety of settings and promotes achievement and maintenance of optimal cardiac/vascular wellness. This exam is a perfect fit for nurses working in inpatient telemetry units, outpatient and cardiac rehabilitation settings, or for faculty teaching students in this specialty. There are two versions of the test, depending on your academic preparation: one version for BSN and above and one for AD/diploma. PCNA has been a strong supporter and advocate of this certification exam. Members are eligible for reduced rates for both the exam and resource materials.


For more information, contact PCNA at or ANCC at Get certified now!!


You can join PCNA or renew your membership by visiting For questions about membership, contact Kristie La Haye, Membership Coordinator, at 608-250-2440 or e-mail If you are interested in learning more about PCNA, visithttp://www.pcna.netor contact us at

Section Description


The Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing is the official journal of the Preventive Cardiovascular Nurses Association. The mission of the Preventive Cardiovascular Nurses Association is to promote nurses as leaders in cardiovascular risk reduction and disease management.