Society of Pediatric Nurses Department| Volume 68, P99-102, January 2023

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Society of Pediatric Nurses: A year in review – 2022

Published:January 05, 2023DOI:
      Happy New Year! As we begin 2023, we continue to navigate through another pandemic year, a season that has lingered much longer than most of us had expected. The pressures and challenges continue to weigh heavily, both individually and professionally. My hope for 2023 is that we are able to emerge from these adversities with a renewed sense of hope and gratitude and the opportunity for more maskless face-to-face time with family, friends and colleagues.
      SPN faced a difficult start to 2022, as we mourned the loss of Sandra Mott, PhD, RN-BC, CPN. Sandy served as SPN President from 2006 to 2008 and most recently as the SPN Column Editor for the Journal of Pediatric Nursing until her passing. She was a committed supporter of SPN and was passionate about pediatric nursing research and a mentor to many. She made such an invaluable impact on many who work in pediatric nursing.
      Following a national search, Debra Ridling, PhD, MS, RN, NEA-BC, the Associate Chief Nurse for Practice and Research and the Director of the Center for Pediatric Nursing Research at Seattle Children's Hospital, was appointed to fill the vacancy of SPN Column Editor for the Journal of Pediatric Nursing.

      Annual conference

      The SPN 32nd Annual Conference was in person following two years of virtual conferences, and there was much excitement among the 628 conference attendees who gathered together in Anaheim, CA. Conference presentations were diverse in topics and rich in content. Presenters shared valuable evidence-based resources to advance clinical care, education, leadership, innovation and research. A huge thank you to Tina Spagnola, SPN's Director of Programming, the Program Planning Committee, presenters, vendors and the SPN management team for coordinating a successful conference!
      We recognized two outgoing Board Members for dedication and contributions to SPN, and both provided unwavering leadership and ensured SPN endured during an extremely challenging period. LaDonna Northington, DNS, RN-BC completed her term (2020–2022) as President and has transitioned into the Nominating Committee Chair role. Ann Spence, DNP, RN completed her second term as Director (2019–2022).
      We welcomed Gayla Goleman, DNP, RN-BC, CPN for her second term as Director and Amy Marks, MSN, RN, CPN, CPHQ as a new Director. Both will be serving 3-year terms from 2022 to 2025.
      The Awards Task Force recognized several members for excellence in practice and service with the following awards.
      • The Excellence in Clinical Practice award recipient was Holly Lewis, DNP, RN, CPN, CNE for making a significant contribution to the care of children and their families through outstanding clinical performance.
      • The Excellence in Education award was presented to Carrie Hill, PhD, RN, CNE, CPN. Carrie was recognized for making a significant contribution to pediatric nursing as an educator.
      • The Excellence in Clinical Scholarship award recognizes the contributions to improve well-being and health care of children and their families through the consistent application of scholarship in clinical practice and was presented to Caitlin McGee, MSN, RN, CPN.
      • The Excellence in Innovation Award was presented to Surlina Asamoa, MSN, MHA for new and creative approaches, through education, support of the community, and innovative process that result in better quality care for children and their families.
      • The Barbara Larson Humanitarianism Award recipient, Juli McGowan Boit, RN, MSN, FNP, FAAN, was recognized for exemplifying the ideals, values and commitment to serve children.
      • The Chapter of the Year Award was presented to the North Central Texas Chapter.

      Website refresh

      SPN transitioned to a new website platform in May. Although many of the features look the same, there is improved functionality with the new site. One of the added features is the ability to connect, collaborate and learn from peers in a new online Discussion Forum which allows for general communication as well as customized groups for chapters and committees to post and share information with others.

      Committees and task forces

      SPN is fortunate to have many members who generously volunteer and serve in committees, task forces and work groups. Membership engagement is the key to allowing SPN to achieve our mission of advancing the specialty of pediatric nursing through excellence in education, research and practice.

      Educational products and services committee

      SPN has offered a variety of educational topics designed to support the learning and professional development needs of our members.
      Live webinars were offered throughout the year with recordings available in the SPN Online Education Center. The recordings can be viewed on demand, allowing members flexibility to earn contact hours.
      • Trauma Informed Care presented by Tanner Funk DNP, RN reviewed how it is critical for all health care workers to have a fundamental understanding of how lived experiences affect our patient population.
      • Eating Disorders: Why so Scary? was presented by Angela Kinstler, MSN, APRN, PMHNP-BC, CNL. Attendees gained a better understanding of recognizing signs and symptoms of an eating disorder, the evidenced-based medical and psychological treatment for eating disorders and how to effectively communicate with these patients and their families.
      • Unlocking the Teenage Brain: Understanding the Neuroscience Behind Teenage Behavior was presented by Kimberly A. Hinman, PhD. The presentation provided valuable information to assist nurses in managing adolescent patients in their care.
      • Proactive Support Strategies to Promote Emotional Safety presented by Jenaya Gordon, MA, CCLS, NCC offered participants practical skills and strategies to promote emotional safety to support children during times of distress.
      • State Advocacy – A Grassroots Toolkit for Gender Affirming Care was presented by the Healthcare Policy and Advocacy Committee (HPAC). The presentation shared tools and resources developed by the HPAC to mobilize the pediatric nurses' voice on the state level to protect, advocate for welfare and ensure access to health care.
      • Supporting the Grieving Child and Family presented by David J Schonfeld, MD, FAAP provided practical advice on how to support grieving children and their families.
      The 5th edition of the Pediatric Nursing Certification Review Book is being finalized by Louise Jakubik, PhD, RN, NPD-BC, CSP and Janice Selekman, DNSc, RN, NCSN, FNASN. This content serves as the foundation for the pediatric certification exam, and the 5th edition will be available by April 2023.
      New this year was the introduction of the Coffee Break interactive sessions to discuss topics of interest trending in pediatric nursing. Three Coffee Break events have been hosted with member discussion on the topics of nurse staffing and retention and the impact on Just Culture with a case involving a Tennessee nurse being convicted of criminally negligent homicide following a medication error.

      Clinical practice and research committee

      The Clinical Practice and Research Committee (CPRC) published an informational paper titled A review and recommendations: Pediatric Reminder and Recall Interventions and Immunization Rates. This paper addresses the role of the pediatric nurse in achieving the Healthy People 2030 goal of 90% of children receiving 4 doses of diphtheria-tetanus-acellular pertussis (DTaP) by their second birthday, maintaining vaccine coverage level of measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) by 2 years of age and achieving 80% of adolescents 13–15 years of age receiving two doses of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine. The CPRC has also created a resource to assist members with completing grant funding applications.
      Two research studies were approved this past year:
      • An SPN led study, Nurse Perceptions of Caring for Pediatric Patients with Behavioral Health Needs on Inpatient Non-Psychiatric Units (Acute Care Units) is being conducted by Julie Van Orne, MSN, RN, CPN, CNL and Mary Cazzell, PhD, RN. The research survey launched in late summer and the researchers are planning to share their findings at our 2023 Annual Conference.
      • Pediatric Nurses' Lived Experience of Caring for Victims Suspected of Child Mistreatment has also been initiated and study participants have been enrolled.

      Chapter development and support committee

      There are currently 37 SPN chapters in 23 states. The committee has updated the New Chapter Registration Packet and is working with a group to set up a new chapter. Work is being done to refine chapter leader access to membership and content within the new website platform. The committee is planning to implement an incentive program for recruitment and retention to increase SPN membership.

      Healthcare policy and advocacy committee

      The Healthcare Policy and Advocacy Committee (HPAC) has been actively engaged in work to support legislation to ensure children have access to health care.
      Pediatric nurses play an important role in providing gender affirming care and sexual minority guidance to all children and their families. Legal actions in states such as Arkansas and Texas have impacted access to healthcare for many children and their families. The committee has assembled resources on the SPN website for nurses that support conversations with children and families about gender identity and have developed a Gender Affirming Toolkit designed to assist SPN chapters and members with ready to use resources to take action in their state to address proposed legislation restricting access to care. HPAC has collaborated with other organizations and joined the Brandt et al. v. Rutledge Amici Curiae Brief supporting a parent's right to seek gender affirming medical care for their children Additionally, SPN supported a Texas Supreme Court Amicus Brief defending a parent's right to seek gender affirming medical care for their children.
      The committee launched a social media campaign to educate others on LGBTQA+ information. In addition, two HPAC committee members met with staff of two U.S. Senators who serve on the Senate Finance Committee to provide recommendations on how Medicaid and CHIP can be used to improve mental health coverage for children.
      As a member of the Nursing Community Coalition, SPN amplified its voice with many of the 63 nursing organization members to endorse the following bills/initiatives:
      • Future Advancement of Academic Nursing (FAAN) Act (S.4396/H.R.7945)
      • Telehealth Legislative Priorities: Multi-Stakeholder Letter to Congress
      • Support of the Department of Veterans Affairs' (VA) Directive to allow Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) to practice to the full extent of their education
      • Support for funding of the Nursing Workforce Development Programs (Title VIII of the Public Health Service Act [42 U.S.C. 296 et seq.]) and the National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR, National Institutes of Health) in Fiscal Year 2022
      • Protect and support those on the frontline; Support Nursing Education Infrastructure: Pass the Future Advancement of Academic Nursing (FAAN) Act (S.246/H.R.851); Include Nurses, APRNs, and Nursing Students in all National Public Health Plans; Invest in Federal Programs that support Nursing Workforce and Nursing Research; Promote Access to Telehealth

      Nominating committee

      The Nominating Committee reached out to all members who had expressed interest in serving on the Board of Directors or Nominating Committee in the Willingness to Serve survey in January. Ultimately, ten completed applications were received and these candidates were screened by the Nominating Committee. The final slate of candidates was submitted to the Board in September with these candidates on the ballot of October's election.

      Program planning committee

      The Program Planning Committee is busy planning the 2023 Annual Conference taking place April 26–28 in Pittsburgh, PA. The committee has reviewed the abstracts and identified speakers for the plenary and breakout sessions as well as poster presenters. Three preconference workshops are being offered with topics focused on pharmacology, trauma informed care, and diversity/equity/inclusion. Learn more at and register today!

      Pediatric nursing excellence task force

      The Pediatric Nursing Excellence Task Force finalized the construct of “pediatric nursing excellence” through the development of the Pediatric Nursing Excellence Model. The model was introduced during a plenary session at the Annual Conference and was published in the Journal of Pediatric Nursing (you can find it online now). Thank you to SPN members Rhonda Cooper, MSN, RN, NEA-BC, Kay Cowen, MSN, RN-BC, CNE, ANEF, Rae Ann Kingsley, DNP, APRN, CPNP-AC/PC-AP-PMN, Betsy McDowell, PhD, RN, CNE, ANEF (chair), Debra Ridling, PhD, MS, RN, NEA-BC, Lori Williams, DNP, RN, RNC-NIC, CCRN, NNP-BC and Ann Bowling, PhD, APRN, CPNP-PC, CNE, CHSE for the tremendous effort that went into identifying the 16 concepts that comprise the Pediatric Nursing Excellence Model. These concepts serve as the structure to guide clinical advancement, pediatric onboarding and residency programs, the framework for professional practice and collaborative governance, and as a guide for pediatric quality improvement projects. There will be additional work to disseminate this model and integrate its concepts in nursing education and clinical care with our healthcare partners.

      Core competencies task force

      The Core Competencies Task Force is updating and aligning SPNs residency and pre-licensure content to align with the Pediatric Nursing Excellence Model.

      Diversity, equity and inclusion task force

      The Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Task Force will continue their work through 2023 to increase membership diversity and support SPN's contributions toward achieving the Healthy People 2030 goal to eliminate health disparities, achieve health equity, and attain health literacy to improve the health and well-being of pediatric patients, families, and communities. The Task Force completed a membership survey and disseminated these findings at the Annual Conference in poster and podium presentations.

      Position statements

      Position statements articulate SPN's stance on pivotal issues affecting the specialty of pediatric nursing and the nursing care of children and their families and should be used as a reference to support advocacy efforts and nursing practice. Three position statements were reviewed and updated this past year:
      • Safe Staffing for Pediatric Patients
      • The Role of the Pediatric Nurse in the Promotion and Protection of Human Milk and Breastfeeding
      • Children, Adolescents, and Families' Exposure to E-Cigarettes, Nicotine, and Tobacco Smoke in the United States

      History task force

      This new task force was launched in September 2022 with the goal of maintaining a historical timeline of the organization and a record of past president contributions and key milestones for SPN. I am grateful to Founding Member Cecily Betz and Past Presidents Lynn Mohr and Vicky Bowden for sharing a desire to honor SPN's past. I am excited to see the work that comes from this group as they chronicle the evolution of SPN and advancements in pediatric nursing care.

      Pediatric scope and standards of practice

      Work on the 3rd edition of the Pediatric Scope and Standards is being planned in collaboration with the National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners (NAPNAP). Over the course of the next year, content will be reviewed and updated to reflect the changes to the scope and standards of pediatric practice since the last publication in 2015.

      Update mission and vision

      In early 2022 as the Board of Directors prepared for our strategic planning session, we paused to reflect on our current mission and vision. As a Board we agreed that our mission and vision have not changed but we could better articulate the guiding statements of our organization. Our refreshed mission and vision rolled out with our new strategic plan in late 2022.
      Tabled 1
      SPN's MissionSPN's Vision
      The mission of the Society of Pediatric Nurses is to advocate for the specialty of pediatric nursing by advancing excellence in education, research and evidence-based practice.The Society of Pediatric Nurses will be the premier professional nursing organization that establishes and promotes nursing standards of excellence for the care of children and their families.

      Strategic plan

      The SPN Board recently finalized the 2023–2025 Strategic Plan. The updated strategic plan builds upon work that has been started to advance SPN's mission. The priorities for the next 3 years include:

      Strategic goal #1

      Drive and elevate career growth of the pediatric nurse
      • Create a structured mentoring program for SPN Members
      • Launch ongoing micro-learning content on pediatric hot topics
      • Develop a curriculum-based Pediatric Nursing Leadership Skills Development Program

      Strategic goal #2

      Generate more visibility for SPN within the pediatric nursing specialty
      • Develop and launch a pediatric nursing department excellence program (name TBD)
      • Establish SPN as a key influencer to pediatric nursing research and practice through thought leadership and organizational relationship development.

      Strategic goal #3

      Increase the number of practicing pediatric nurses
      • Create a Pediatric Nurse Ambassador Program for high school and college students
      • Conduct a research project on why pediatric bedside nurses are leaving pediatrics
      I am excited to begin the work to launch our new strategic plan initiatives and am confident our members will have much to contribute.
      As I reflect on all that SPN has accomplished this past year, I am proud of what we have done. SPN's successes are because of the many member volunteers who have contributed their time, resources and knowledge to advance the specialty of pediatric nursing through excellence in education, research and practice. Our management team is to be commended for all that they do behind the scenes to allow this transformative work to take place.
      Thank you for the privilege of serving as SPN President.