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The pediatric clinical nurse specialist: A children's hospital journey

Published:August 18, 2022DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pedn.2022.07.019
      The role of the pediatric clinical nurse specialist (CNS) is grounded in the core curriculum and competencies outlined by the National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists Statement on CNS Practice and Education and the certifying body (
      • National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists
      Statement on clinical nurse specialist practice and education.
      ). As of 2019, there were over 70,000 practicing CNSs across the United States (
      • National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists
      Statement on clinical nurse specialist practice and education.
      ). The NACNS program directory outlines 12 CNS pediatric programs in eight states and over 60 adult programs across the country (
      • National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists
      The role of the CNS: Findings from the 2020 census.
      ). While there are fewer pediatric programs, the 2020 NACNS census survey revealed that based on the CNS competencies and the Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) Consensus Model's certification for licensure, approximately 22.5% (n = 557) of CNS respondents practice in pediatrics. Care of the pediatric patient has become more complex and therefore a need for a pediatric CNS to support more complex care becomes even more apparent (
      • Cohen E.
      • Kuo D.Z.
      • Agrawal R.
      • Berry J.G.
      • Bhagat S.K.
      • Simon T.D.
      • Srivastava R.
      Children with medical complexity: An emerging population for clinical and research initiatives.
      ;
      • Murphy S.
      • Ehritz C.
      Clinical nurse specialist practice strategies for children with medical complexity.
      ). The purpose of this article is to review ongoing pediatric CNS challenges, the value of the role, opportunities and outlining the journey of the CNS team at Seattle Children's (SC) in Seattle, Washington.
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