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Coronavirus, Pandemic, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Nursing



  1. Lucciola, Megan E. DNP, ARNP, AGCNS-BC, AGACNP-BC
  2. Nelson, Nicole M. DNP, RN, AGCNS-BC, CCRN
  3. Rea, Jessica M. MN, RN, CMSRN
  4. Boudreaux, Allan J. MSN, RN, CCNS, CEN
  5. Fedderson, Daniel J. DNP, RN, AGCNS-BC, CNOR
  6. Hodge, Nancy S. MSN, RN, ACNS-BC, CWCN


Purpose: The COVID-19 pandemic has significantly challenged healthcare organizations across the globe, forcing innovation, resourcefulness, and flexibility. The purpose of this article is to describe the impact of clinical nurse specialist practice on COVID-19 preparation at a military hospital.


Environment of Care Changes: The pandemic required facilities to develop expansion plans to facilitate a potential surge of COVID-19 patients. Clinical nurse specialists collaborated to develop a plan to expand care capacity and streamline testing while designating specific critical care and medical-surgical areas for COVID-19 patients.


Staffing Considerations: To capitalize on the expanded bed capacity, clinical nurse specialists identified and trained outpatient nursing staff to serve as nurse extenders.


Discussion: Early in the pandemic, a lack of strong evidence-based interventions to mitigate transmission and treatment necessitated the development of innovative solutions. The clinical nurse specialist team established designated transport routes for COVID-19 patients, leveraged technology to improve methods of care, and cultivated a culture of innovation by providing on-the-spot meaningful recognition to staff.


Conclusion: As leaders in healthcare, clinical nurse specialists are change agents that work to maintain high-quality, safe patient care even during a global pandemic.