1. Alexander, Mary MA, RN, CRNI(R), CAE, FAAN
  2. INS Chief Executive Officer Editor, Journal of Infusion Nursing

Article Content

This time last year, I wrote about navigating this unfolding COVID-19 crisis and reevaluating the way we live, work, and relate to each other. With another surge in cases, despite vaccine distribution, we now find ourselves battling new variants of the virus with a renewed vigilance of mask-wearing and social distancing. Pandemic backup plans are being revised, and we are more conscious than ever of infection prevention practices both in the field and in our everyday lives.

Mary Alexander, MA, ... - Click to enlarge in new windowMary Alexander, MA, RN, CRNI(R), CAE, FAAN, INS Chief Executive Officer Editor,

I am once again reminded not to take the status quo for granted, as we all know the science behind COVID-19 is evolving faster than I can put it into words. As I reflect on another unpredictable year, I want to express my gratitude to the scientists and researchers who created the vaccines and are continuously working to find treatments/medications and evaluate new data every day. I also want to thank my fellow nurses and other health care professionals for your commitment, resilience, and flexibility as you continue to care for patients with COVID-19 and others amid changing protocols.


In a recent issue of our membership publication INSider, one critical care educator shared, "When COVID first came on the radar, our administration threatened to fire staff for wearing masks in areas where masks were not normally required with the rationale of 'you're frightening patients and visitors.'" A vascular access nurse recalled that "It was a fight in the beginning for adequate supplies and the right equipment!" Judith Kay Fogg, a medical/surgical nurse manager, said, "At the start of the pandemic, I worked every day for the first 3 months. Staff were anxious, and some were totally afraid. I came in to see both shifts daily to reassure my staff." Jessica Ash, a clinical nurse, said, "[It was difficult not] allowing a guest to accompany a patient for their infusion, especially for first-time infusions." Kathleen Brown, a nurse at a rural hospital, shared that "A patient was admitted who claimed COVID-19 was a hoax, but still died from it." As you continue to deal with many of these situations, remember to reach out for support to your fellow clinicians, and to slow down, if possible, and to take time to take care of yourself.


Throughout the year, INS continued our work to ensure we provided programs, products, and services to meet our members' needs and help them in their clinical practice. Since the release of the Infusion Therapy Standards of Practice, 8th edition, we have released 5 Policies and Procedures for Infusion Therapy companion books and have also updated our Fundamentals of Infusion Therapy (FIT) interactive program and our Point of Care Reference Card set. Visit for information on how these products can complement your practice.


While INS 2020 was held as a virtual event, this past August we were able to hold INS 2021 as an in-person convention in Las Vegas, NV. For many attendees, this meeting was the first in-person one they attended since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. The INS team and Paris Hotel staff took steps to provide a safe environment. Many speakers presented in person; however, due to organizational or jurisdictional restrictions, some speakers delivered their presentations virtually. My thanks and appreciation goes out to all-attendees, exhibitors, speakers, INS board of directors, staff, and volunteers for being flexible, understanding, and compliant as we sought to meet safety measures while providing a positive learning experience. Plans are well underway for INS 2022, scheduled for June 4-7 in Orlando, FL.


As we look toward 2022, INS will continue to adapt to the challenges of COVID-19 and offer support, guidance, and other educational materials to help our members and colleagues make informed decisions about best practices and patient care throughout this public health crisis.


Mary Alexander