1. Deutsch, Lynn MSN, RN, CRNI(R), VA-BC
  2. INS President, 2019-2020

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It is hard to believe how fast my year as president has gone by. I have learned so much working with Mary Alexander as my mentor and Felicia Schaps as my presidential advisor, who both supported me and encouraged me throughout the year. Other past presidents offered me pearls of wisdom. I have developed relationships with wonderful nurse leaders from around the country. I am thankful for the INS Board of Directors and INS staff, who were able to respond to the challenges we faced this year to keep INS a sound organization. It has truly been a pleasure and an honor to serve this great organization.

Lynn Deutsch, MSN, R... - Click to enlarge in new windowLynn Deutsch, MSN, RN, CRNI(R), VA-BC INS President, 2019-2020

INS has been promoting the World Health Organization's (WHO's) "Year of the Nurse and Midwife" and the 200th anniversary of Florence Nightingale's birthday since January. Nightingale was a true pioneer, and her life's work made nursing one of the most trusted professions. The nursing profession has been elevated to hero status as we have been frontline caretakers of all COVID-19 patients. Nurses from all over the nation volunteered to deploy to the hot spots to help their fellow nurses. There is no doubt this pandemic has changed how nursing care will be provided in the future.


In the 20th century there were several pandemics: Spanish Flu of 1918, 1957 Asian Flu, and 1968 Hong Kong flu. The Spanish Flu victims died of secondary bacterial infections due to lack of sanitation and antibiotics. The 1957 flu researchers were investigating the virus and were able to create a vaccine. Vaccinations are the best defense against all influenzas.1 The origins of these influenzas were avian.2


The first pandemic in the 21st century was the 2009 outbreak of influenza A (H1N1), which was linked in the past to direct contact with swine. There is a need for coordination between animal health researchers studying zoonotic disease and public health researchers to investigate how diseases are passed between animals and humans.2 My veterinarian gives my dog a canine influenza vaccination every year because he is worried it may someday mutate to humans.


The COVID-19 pandemic has changed our culture and how we look at our supply chain and distribution. It has put telemedicine in the forefront, so patients can talk to their providers through video conferencing. As a result of social distancing, restaurants, bars, and nonessential businesses were closed, putting millions out of work. This global event has affected a multitude of countries, and each has been impacted greatly by the associated deaths and strain on their health care systems. The world has changed.


The shortage of life-saving patient equipment, especially ventilators, caused challenges internationally and, at times, limited the ability to effectively treat patients with COVID-19. The limited supply of personal protective equipment (PPE) in viral hot spots like New York City put many health care workers at risk. The Navy sent the USS Comfort, a 1000-bed hospital ship, to help with the shortage of hospital beds. Over 21 000 volunteer health care workers went to New York to relieve the strain on the system.


Nurses are experiencing higher stress levels than ever before. There is still so much unknown about this virus and the impact it will have on each nurse. The shortage of PPE, financial concerns, and the magnitude of the spread have led to exhaustion, and going to work has been compared to being in a war zone. As a profession, we must support and encourage each other. Double shifts take their toll, and nurses need to find ways to combat the burnout that may result. It is imperative that as frontline responders we protect ourselves and follow the guidelines for patient safety. COVID-19 has changed our clinical practice and we need to maintain the highest standards for infection prevention to protect our patients in the environments we are in.


COVID-19 has also changed education. Schools and colleges had to finish their semesters online, and my nursing students had to complete the rest of their clinical hours online. Graduations were cancelled, and some nursing seniors graduated early so they could immediately go to work.


On March 27, 2020, Congress passed, and the President signed into law, HR.748. the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.3,4 There were many provisions for nursing, including reauthorizing the Title VIII Nursing Workforce Development programs, providing $16 billion for strategic national stockpile including PPE and $14.25 billion for colleges and universities and financial aid for students. In Texas, the governor waived several regulations by allowing temporary work permit extensions for graduate nurses who have not taken the NCLEX, allowing students in the final year of their program to meet clinical objectives by exceeding the 50% limit on simulations and retired nurses to reactivate their licenses.


As we navigate through these unprecedented closures, INS is continuing to plan ahead. INS 2020 will now take place virtually, September 3, 10, 17, and 24. The entire 4-day program will be recorded and archived for future viewing in our LEARNING CENTER. You will have the option to attend virtually, in "real-time" or wait until the conclusion to view the archived program. While we will miss seeing you in person, one huge benefit of the virtual program is that you will be able to view each and every session in the entire program. We will also be hosting a virtual exhibition where industry-leading companies will showcase the latest innovations and emerging technologies in the specialty. More information is available at


The 8th edition of the Infusion Therapy Standards of Practice, along with revised editions of the coordinating Policies and Procedures books, will be published in January 2021. INCC conducted a role delineation study to ensure the CRNI(R) examination reflects current infusion practice. In March, the first exam based on the revised 3 core content areas was administered. Another administration is scheduled for September.


INS has also been working diligently to improve the LEARNING CENTER, and the education department has expanded INS' web presence. This could not have come at a better time due to the social distancing we experienced in the spring. With the array of educational assets available, including webinars and podcasts, and the easy-to-navigate web portal, there are many options for members and CRNI(R)s to earn contact hours and recertification units.


Our wonderful educators Marlene Steinheiser and Dawn Berndt saw the need to help colleges of nursing satisfy the clinical requirements through online learning. INS wanted to contribute to students who were impacted by limited clinical opportunities due to COVID-19 school and clinical education closures. As such, the Fundamentals of Infusion Therapy (FIT) program has been made available at reduced cost for colleges/students coupled with a free, 1-year INS membership for students. This gives students access to all of the INS learning platforms to help meet clinical hours.


My presidential theme was "Lifelong Learning: Every Nurse's Journey." I wanted INS members to receive a tuition reduction, so I contacted my alma mater, Grand Canyon University (GCU), to explore this opportunity. Through a cooperative agreement between INS and GCU, INS members now receive a 10% discount on tuition. GCU offers many nursing degrees, and hopefully many of you will take advantage of the discount as well as your employer's tuition reimbursement benefits.


INS is an organizational affiliate of ANA with voting privileges. As INS' representative I attended the ANA Membership Assembly in June. ANA put forth several initiatives, one of which was allowing "dreamers" to be able to take the NCLEX exam. It passed unanimously. I had the privilege of meeting ANA President Dr Ernest Grant and other ANA nurse leaders. I also attended the summer and fall meetings of the Nursing Organizational Alliance. It was a great learning experience for me to meet other volunteer leaders and to learn about the responsibilities of leadership.


It has been so rewarding to give back to this wonderful organization. I hope all of you will take advantage of all the learning resources in the LEARNING CENTER to fuel your lifelong learning. Remember, we are the infusion experts. We need to mentor the next generation of nurses. Staying engaged in INS is a great way to advance your knowledge. I encourage all of you to become CRNI(R)s and look for ways you can volunteer your time for INS. I promise you it will be one of the most satisfying endeavors of your career.




1. Kilbourne ED. Influenza pandemics of the 20th century. Emerg Infect Dis. 2006;12(1):9-14. doi:10.3201/eid1201.051254 [Context Link]


2. Trovao NS, Nelson MI. When pigs fly: pandemic influenza enters the 21st century. PLoS Pathog. 2020;16(3):e1008259. doi:10.1371/journal.ppat.1008259 [Context Link]


3. American Association of Colleges of Nursing. AACN Applauds as Covid-19 Stimulus Bill Becomes Law. Published March 27, 2020. Accessed March 29, 2020.[Context Link]


4. American Journal of Nursing. Nurses and COVID-19 into the battle with all we have. Off the Charts Blog. Published March 23, 2020. Accessed March 29, 2020.[Context Link]