Add an NP to improve ER patient QT

Crowded, busy emergency rooms may find their patient loads alleviated by the addition of just one nurse practitioner to general hospital staff, according to a new study by the Loyola University Health System. The NP can curb unnecessary ER visits by serving as a first line of defense, providing preventative treatments, “improving the continuity in care, and troubleshooting problems for patients,” says a Loyola University Health System release.

Published in a recent issue of Surgery, the journal of the Society of University Surgeons, the Central Surgical Association, and the American Association of Endocrine Surgeons, the research analyzed the results of adding an NP to a department with three surgeons. The study recounted an individual experience in one hospital, following nurse practitioner Mary Kay Larson, B.S., M.S.N., C.N.N., A.P.R.N.-B.C.

Researchers examined patient records from one year before and one year after Larson joined the hospital’s staff. Both sets of patients (415 before Larson, 411 after) were statistically similar, including length of stay and readmissions. From these groups of patients, researchers monitored which ones returned unnecessarily to the ER, i.e., those visits that did not lead to an inpatient admission.

Larson credits the decrease in ER visits to her communication with patients, saying she “routinely checked on their progress and responded to their concerns by ordering lab tests, calling in prescriptions, and arranging to care for them in the outpatient setting to maintain continuity in treatment.” She was also responsible for their discharge plans. Patient phone calls increased by 64% after Larson joined the hospital team, as did other outpatient services (visiting nurse, physical therapy, or occupational therapy). Researchers say this combination contributed to unnecessary ER visits dropping from 25% to 13%.

Though further research is necessary to corroborate these results, the addition of RNs to hospital staff may be the key to measurable improvements in patient care and operations.

African American patients exhibit higher COPD readmission rates

When patients leave a health care facility, everyone hopes it will be for the last time, as they go on to lead a healthy life. But for some African Americans with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), their return visits might necessitate a revolving door.

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) reports readmissions among African American COPD patients age 40 and older are 30% higher than other minority groups, and 9% higher than Caucasians, where patients were readmitted to the hospital within 30 days of treatment.

Analyzing data from 2008*, the AHRQ also found 7% of those readmissions were directly related to COPD, while 21% were all-cause readmissions. Other notable discrepancies include 22% higher readmissions among patients from poor communities when compared with their affluent counterparts, and 13% higher readmissions among males when compared to females. Economically, the surveyed COPD initial admissions cost an average $7,100; readmissions were 18% higher, at $8,400. And averaging $11,100, all-cause readmissions cost twice as much as initial admissions.

* These statistics were published in a recent AHRQ News and Numbers summary, based on a statistic brief drawing data from the State Inpatient Databases for the following 15 states: Arkansas, California, Florida, Hawaii, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New York, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Virginia, and Washington. Visit www.ahrq.govfor more information.

TTY Number Helps Hearing-Impaired Nurses Get Connected With Domestic Violence Information

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, 37% of all women who seek care in hospital emergency rooms for violence-related injuries were hurt by a current or former spouse or partner. Because so many health care providers come into contact with victims of domestic abuse on a regular basis, the Family Violence Prevention Fund’s National Health Resource Center on Domestic Violence has developed a wide range of services to help doctors, nurses and other health professionals identify and assist violence victims. These resources include clinical guidelines for domestic violence screening, training programs and a national toll-free information hotline, (888) Rx-ABUSE.

Until recently, nurses with hearing disabilities were unable to take advantage of the telephone hotline. But now the resource center has bridged this information gap by adding a new TTY number for the hearing impaired, (800) 595-4TTY. As with the regular hotline, callers to the TTY number can request free information, talk to an expert on domestic violence and be connected to a national network of specialists who can provide training or consultation on domestic abuse.

“Too often, victims of domestic violence do not get the assistance they need because their health care providers do not have the training, information and tools to successfully address abuse,” says Esta Soler, director of the Family Violence Prevention Fund. “This new TTY number will let us reach and educate even more health care providers who are in a unique position to help victims of abuse.”

Nurses can learn more about the full range of domestic violence prevention resources available from the National Health Resource Center on Domestic Violence by visiting


Caring for Communities After Disaster

It’s 2:30 a.m. on a Sunday when the phone rings. “There have been two fatalities in Butts County,” says the disaster action team leader on the other end of the line. “We need a nurse to go to the site, and I understand you are on call.” Now wide awake, the nurse puts on a Red Cross Uniform and rushes to meet the other disaster team members, and the group continues to the disaster site. The nurse’s night of caring for the community suddenly begins.

In a hospital or other Nurses deal with disaster victims in a structured environment, but when disaster strikes a community, the rules, care, and strategy change. The nurse is no longer the staunch professional seemingly untouched by the mars of pain, death, and anguish from people with a last name and other identifying information. She is now among neighbors, acquaintances, friends, and sometimes family.

Nurses are called upon daily to apply skills, concepts, and theory to various situations. The core essence of the nursing profession mandates that they assist with basic physical, emotional, and spiritual human needs. Throughout their career they develop helping, trusting, and caring relationships with patients and families. Nurses are expected to create a healing environment for the physical and spiritual self, which respects human dignity. Nurses are empathetic to a family member who has suffered the loss of a loved one, and as they routinely perform their jobs, they work to instill faith, hope, and honor in others. During other times, they must step into the shoes of the other person in an authentic manner. Not only must they promote and accept both positive and negative feelings as they genuinely listen to another’s story, but they are called upon to use creative scientific problem-solving methods for caring decision making. They are required by their code of ethics to share teaching and learning that addresses the individual needs and comprehension styles. The tasks they perform will eventually open avenues of promise and change. The nurse has just used all 10 of Watson’s Caritas Processes.1

Following a disaster, the nurse on call and the Red Cross team enters the neighborhood, where it is apparent that a storm or possibly a tornado has hit. The streetlights are out, and trees and debris cover the area. The somber stillness is a quiet reminder of the destruction and tragedy that lay ahead. Some streets are blocked off for safety; power lines are down and the area is pitch black. As the emergency vehicle reaches the neighborhood, the nurse notices that the police and fire department are on the scene with makeshift emergency lighting. It is easy to identify which house has the fatalities because a huge oak tree has crushed one corner, leaving it unstable and uninhabitable.

As the team exits the vehicle, the fire department captain meets the team to inform them that the coroner has just removed the bodies of a 23-year-old male and his three-year-old son from the house. He points to the house where the surviving family, still in shock, anxiously waits for assistance. A lump enters the nurse’s throat, which she normally does not feel because she deals with death and dying regularly. The nurse is exhibiting one of the five components of Swanson’s Compassionate Care Program. She is in the knowing stage, which is “striving to understand an event as it has meaning to the life of another.”2 Although unaware at the time, most nurses demonstrate all five phases of the Compassionate Care model—knowing, being with, doing for, enabling, and maintaining belief—when assisting families who are dealing with a loss. While in the knowing stage, the nurse must carefully avoid assumptions and focus mainly on the one being cared for. Additionally, this is a period that the nurse must assess the situation and all options thoroughly. The nurse must use excellent communication skills to seek cues from the person being cared for.

The nurse and team of volunteers wade through a puddle of water and enter a damp, dimly lit house situated next to the destroyed house. Trying to focus in the hazily lit room, a young female suddenly appears and runs towards the nurse with tears streaming down her face. Aside from the immediate post-disaster needs of shelter and emotional support, the nurse knows the young lady will need help dealing with the aftermath of the disaster, especially the grieving and mourning process as she makes funeral arrangements for her only child and husband. The nurse must be emotionally present for the young lady, which is the second phase of the Compassionate Care Program—being with. It is during this time the nurse is emotionally available for the person suffering the loss. The nurse conveys reliability and can be free to share feelings without burdening the victim that has suffered the loss.3

The real-life scenario is an example of the need to employ Jean Watson’s 10 Caritas Processes to assist patients through mourning and grief after a significant loss has occurred. Though you can prepare for emergencies in general, crises and disasters are, of course, by their nature unexpected and unpredictable. When a family has experienced the loss of a home and personal items, whether by a fire, flood, tornado, or other natural disaster, they mourn the loss of the objects as well. Nurses must know how to assist families through the initial and subsequent stages of grief to a stage of acceptance where they can begin to move on to health and wellness. The support, acceptance, and gentle guidance that health care professionals give are very important to beginning the journey of caring after a tragedy. A caregiver’s knowledge and suggestions while allowing the affected family members to make their own decisions can help tremendously during difficult times.

As the nurse allows the young, distraught wife to embrace her and sob on her shoulder, she has just put into action the first of Watson’s 10 Caritas Processes—Embrace altruistic values and practice loving kindness with self and others.1 Afterwards, the journey of caring for the community proceeds using Watson’s theory and the five components of compassionate caring that Swanson describes.2 Dr. Watson’s nursing theory has been adopted by several magnet hospitals, including the Atlanta VA Medical Center, because it exemplifies the essence of the nursing profession and is the epitome of the VA mission, “to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan.”4

A calamitous year

Last year, 2011, produced an unusually large number of natural disasters. Almost every state suffered some sort of catastrophe. According to an article by MSNBC, “the United States has experienced 98 natural disaster events, which left $27 billion in economic losses, more than double the 10-year average of $11.8 billion.”5 FEMA declared 84 disasters in the United States from January through September 2011.6 The disasters touched every profession, every socioeconomic status, and every culture. Nurses who normally treat patients in a sterile protected environment found themselves caring for people in shelters or at the disaster site.

The events began with the winter snow and ice storms that plagued states that usually do not see any cold weather. Interstates became impassible for days and neighborhoods were without heat and lights for weeks. During early spring, the snow melted and again disaster struck as flooding inundated once quiet, serene neighborhoods. The floods wiped out bridges, sweeping away homes and entire communities. Just when citizens began to breathe a sigh of relief, the spring brought destructive tornadoes and windstorms, taking lives and destroying the fragments that the floods had left behind. Coupled with the coastal arrival of the residual from tsunamis in other countries, everyone wondered what could happen next. Then an earthquake shook the eastern United States, so intense it cracked the foundation of the Washington Monument on the National Mall.

Nursing with the Red Cross

Nurses have always been a cornerstone for the provision of services by the American Red Cross. More than 20,000 nurses continue to be involved in paid and volunteer capacities at all levels and in all service areas.7

The Red Cross team at the disaster site in this scenario interviews the young lady to ascertain her immediate needs. They learn the family has no insurance—nothing to cover the destroyed house or even funeral expenses for the deceased husband and child. Not only does this situation require the nurse to assist with physical, emotional, and spiritual human needs such as temporary shelter, food, and clothing, but she must also step briefly into the shoes of the other person in an authentic and empathetic manner as she learns what happened.

The young widow tearfully tells the story of what happened. She describes the thunder and lightning as the storm ravaged the neighborhood. The father decided to check on the son in the next room who had been awakened by the thunder. Just as he lifted the two year old to comfort him, the oak tree crashed through the roof, crushing them both. The young widow begins to cry again and the nurse hugs her to her shoulder, allowing her to sob and holding back her own tears as the rest of the Red Cross team sits quietly.

The nurse realizes that the process of recovery will be long and difficult for the survivor, but with her training, dedication, and sensitivity, she assists the widow with the immediate needs. The nurse provides Red Cross funds for temporary housing, meals for several days, and partial payment of both funerals. The nurse has many conversations with the young lady as she assists with the early stages of grief and mourning.

Nursing theories, compassionate care programs, and caring processes can be put to use when a disaster strikes the community. Disasters happen all too often and the nurses must be prepared to assist the client on the caring journey to the road of recovery and healing. Nursing does not stop when the shift ends, it continues as long as needed as the nurse seeks to specifically maintain the last portion of the Nightingale pledge…“with loyalty will I endeavor to aid the physician, in his work, and devote myself to the welfare of those committed to my care.8


  1. J. Watson. “International Caritas Consortium,” accessed September 25, 2011,
  2. K. Swanson. “Examining the Extent to Which Swanson’s Theory of Caring and Carper’s Ways of Knowing Can be Identified in the Process of Midwife-led Care,” Midwives magazine, accessed September 26, 2011,
  3. J. Alston, J. Dade, and E. Flournoy. Compassionate Bereavement Care. Compassionate Bereavement Care. Decatur, GA: Atlanta VA Hospital.
  4. “Mission, Vision, Core Values & Goals,” accessed September 26, 2011,
  5. M. Llanos. “2011 Already Costliest Year for Natural Disasters,” accessed September 26, 2011,
  6. FEMA, accessed September 26, 2011,
  7.  American Red Cross Nursing, accessed September 26, 2011,
  8. L. Gretta. Nightingale Pledge. Detroit, Michigan.
Saving Lives on the Front Lines

Saving Lives on the Front Lines

Saving Lives on the Front Lines

Do you dream of a nursing position that offers constant variety, instead of treating the same types of patients and medical conditions day in and day out? Do you long for a work environment where physicians regard you as a key player on the team, rather than making you feel subservient? Have you always wanted to work in a field where the patients come from so many different walks of life that a racially, ethnically and culturally diverse nursing staff is nothing short of an absolute necessity?

A career in emergency nursing offers you all this and much more.

“I enjoy the variety,” enthuses Julie Moses, RN, a native of Trinidad who is a clinical resource nurse in the emergency department at Washington Hospital Center in Washington, D.C. “Any medical problem can turn up in the emergency room. You get to do so many different types of nursing—from med/surg, OB and orthopedic to cardiac care and ICU. You see it all, from birth to dying, and everything in between. I just love it!”

Thelma Kuska, BSN, RN, a Filipino-American CEN (Certified Emergency Nurse) who worked for 20 years in the ER at Christ Hospital in Oak Lawn, Ill., believes emergency nursing is an ideal career for minority nurses because it is so empowering. “I’ve worked in other areas, such as surgery and pediatrics,” she says, “but the ER is the most rewarding, because the doctors treat you as a colleague. They value your input. If you say, ‘I need you here in this room, NOW,’ they run. And they show you everything—they’ll say, ‘Come look at the x-ray!’ instead of treating you like someone who’s just there to follow orders.”

Because life-threatening emergencies cut across all categories of age, gender, race, ethnicity and socioeconomic status, emergency nursing is virtually synonymous with diversity. And because the nurse is usually the first person that patients encounter when they are brought into the ER, minority nurses can play a unique and highly visible role in providing culturally sensitive emergency care.

“We’re really right there on the front lines,” notes Cherrlyn Jones, MSN, RN, an African-American clinical resource nurse at Howard University Hospital in Washington, D.C., and president of the Metropolitan Washington Chapter of the Emergency Nurses Association (ENA). “The way the patients see us shapes the way they will view the rest of their treatment.”

“There’s always anxiety in the ER, because patients don’t come there unless something is really wrong,” adds emergency nurse practitioner Elda Ramirez, MSN, RN, CEN, FNP, who is also an assistant professor of clinical nursing at the University of Texas-Houston School of Nursing. “It’s important to give them some sense of relief and comfort. I think that when minority patients see a caregiver from their same culture, it gives them that relief. They think, ‘This person will understand me. They will know what my problem is.’”

Best of all, job opportunities for emergency nurses are everywhere, because the demand for these professionals has risen to unprecedented levels in recent years. While America is currently suffering from an acute nursing shortage in virtually every area of the profession, RNs with specialized emergency-care training, skills and experience have become particularly scarce.

Beyond “ER”

If your knowledge of emergency nursing is based on watching the TV show “ER,” it’s time to switch to the reality channel. “I think the words ‘ER’ may scare some potential nurses away,” Moses believes. “They say, ‘I don’t want to work [in an environment] like that!’ But emergency nursing is simply another type of nursing, another way to care for people. It’s not like the TV show, where everybody is constantly rushing around.”

In fact, the term “emergency room” no longer truly reflects reality. The Emergency Nurses Association, along with a growing number of hospitals, prefers the more all-encompassing term “emergency department (ED).” Today’s emergency nurses can be found practicing in an impressively wide array of settings beyond the traditional ER—from trauma centers, urgent care clinics and prehospital services to such enterprising new areas as in-flight nursing, forensics, amusement park nursing and emergency prevention education. The ENA’s membership ranges from staff nurses, ED nurse managers, administrators and clinical nurse specialists to prehospital coordinators, nurse practitioners and educators.

Kuska now works as an injury control and prevention educator for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, providing outreach to communities in a six-state region. She teaches the importance of seatbelt and airbag use, bicycle safety and drunk-driving prevention. “I did a lot of soul-searching about whether I was ready to give up ER nursing,” she says. “But I finally decided that with this position, I could use my expertise to make a much broader impact than I could treating just one patient at a time.”

Saving Lives on the Front Lines

Still other emergency nurses are expanding their careers into corporate settings. “Many big oil and gas companies now have teams of emergency medical technicians and nurses who are on call in case of accidents or disasters at their refineries,” Ramirez reports. “In fact, a lot of people who have done emergency care in the past end up becoming consultants for corporations in areas like disaster management. I even see emergency nurses going into the business field—there are a lot of companies that contract emergency services to hospitals and corporations.”

Gloria Salazar, MA, BSN, RN, CEN, a 20-year veteran of the ER who is now a trauma education and injury prevention manager at Thomason Hospital in El Paso, Texas, feels that “emergency nursing is a stepping stone. Most emergency nurses have plans to continue their education or their professional development, and they eventually move on to something else.”


Think Fast

Meanwhile, back in the ED, there’s no denying that the pace is fast. Because every emergency case is different and the volume of patients is high, emergency nurses must have a finely honed ability to quickly assess what’s wrong with the patient and take immediate action. Creativity, flexibility and being able to work under pressure are absolutely essential, as are top-notch problem-solving skills, sound judgment and the ability to prioritize which patients are the sickest.

“Critical thinking skills are very important,” says Jones. “You need to be knowledgeable in managing patients with life-threatening problems. You need to be up-to-date on current trends, such as new treatments for acute coronary syndrome. You need to read articles, so that you can explore new information with your colleagues and the physicians. And when you’re carrying out an order, it’s not enough to just do it—you need to understand why you’re carrying out that procedure.”

Because everything in the ED is based on verbal orders, Kuska adds, “you have to know your medicines and know exactly what things are for, so that you can make sure the doctors’ orders are correct. You have to be able to think, ‘Wait, I shouldn’t be giving Demerol to a head-injured patient,’ or ‘The potassium he ordered is too high for a two-hour drip.’ If you haven’t acquired that knowledge from prior experience in another area of nursing, you’re not ready for the ED.”

Ramirez adds one more essential quality to the list: the ability to be nonjudgmental when faced with emergencies that could have easily been prevented if the patient had used common sense. “We recently had a case where a mother was driving with her kids in the car and her little boy was not in a seatbelt,” she says. “She got into an accident and the child flew out the window. But I can only educate her—I cannot judge her. I have to be able to stay calm and say, ‘You know, it’s really important that you seatbelt your child; he could have died today.’ You have to be an exceptional teacher.”

Cultural Detectives

Being an emergency nurse is a lot like being a detective, according to ENA immediate past President Benjamin E. Marett, MSN, RN, CEN. Often, he explains, someone will come into the ED in crisis and neither you nor the patient will have any idea what’s wrong. It’s up to the nurse to sift through all the clues—the patient’s vital signs, their medical history, what they did and ate that day, diagnostic tests such as EKG, electrolytes and cardiac monitoring, etc.—and deduce what the problem is.

“All you may know from the vital signs is that something isn’t quite right,” says Marett. “You need to have a keen ‘sixth sense.’”

Ramirez believes this “Sherlock Holmes component of emergency nursing,” as she puts it, is another crucial area in which minority nurses can make a culturally competent difference when treating patients who share their same ethnic heritage: They are more likely to be attuned to “cultural clues” that would not be apparent to someone outside of that population.

“I think that’s one of the things that gives me an edge in treating Hispanic patients of Mexican descent and some Latin patients,” she relates. “I was born and raised with these people, so it’s like an innate cultural knowledge. When they come to the ED and they’re talking a certain way, they’re using certain terms, you think: ‘Wait a minute, I know what this person is saying.’


“Last night I had a perfect example,” Ramirez continues. “A Hispanic woman came into the ED and she was using a Spanish phrase that, literally translated, means ‘I have tonsils.’ Immediately, I knew exactly what she was talking about. She didn’t have to tell me, ‘My throat hurts and I have fever.’ In my culture, when someone says ‘I have tonsils,’ it means that they’ve had a history of tonsillary problems and now it has come back.

“All I had to do was ask her, ‘What have they treated you with before?’ She told me, ‘The shot.’ I asked, ‘The one with penicillin?’ ‘Yes, that’s the one.’ ‘Does it help?’ ‘Immediately,’ she said. ‘It’s gone within two days.’ She could have said ‘I have tonsils’ to another nurse who wasn’t familiar with Hispanic culture and they would have had no clue. But to me, it made perfect sense.”


Are You Experienced?

Even though the current shortage of emergency nursing specialists is forcing many emergency departments to hire nurses without prior ED training and experience, nurses who do possess solid emergency background and skills are in much greater demand. Moreover, because of its extremely serious and fast-paced nature, emergency nursing is definitely not a field for beginners.

“I would tell any nurse, minority or not, that before you can come to work in emergency nursing, you need a strong base in medical/surgical or another more general area of nursing,” Moses emphasizes. “If you jump right into the ER as soon as you graduate from nursing school, you’re only setting yourself up to be burnt out within a year. But if you get that base first, you’ll be able to function much better when you come to the ER.”

Let’s say you are currently a med/surg nurse who would like to make a career change to the more exciting field of emergency nursing. What specific education, experience and credentials will you need to add to your resume?

“Our hospital requires you to have taken the TNCC (Trauma Nurse Core Course), the ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support) and PALS (Pediatric Advanced Life Support),” says Salazar. “There’s also a critical care course offered at our local university, and I advise the students I work with to take that. Most of the students who take those courses and then look for a job in emergency nursing are the ones that are hired right away.”

In addition, Moses advises potential ED nurses to obtain a strong grounding in technology skills by taking computer classes. “Nowadays, the whole ED is computerized,” she explains. “The patient’s x-rays, medication, everything is on the computer. For discharge planning, you press a key and you get discharge instructions; for patients’ lab work, you pull it up on the computer screen.”

One way today’s hospitals are trying to develop a larger pool of experienced emergency nurses is by increasing their investment in on-the-job training. Jones, who has earned a certificate for the ENPC (Emergency Nurses Pediatric Course) as well as the TNCC, ACLS and PALS, is a good example of a minority nurse who performs this crucial educational function within a hospital ED setting. “I precept most of the new staff that comes in, whether they are nursing students, nurse interns, ED technicians or newly hired RNs,” she says.

Jones created Howard University Hospital’s ED training and orientation program, which puts heavy emphasis on hands-on learning. In addition to classes on topics like pediatrics and critical thinking, preceptees closely shadow Jones and other ED nurses in their clinical settings. The training program also includes mock Code Yellows, mock traumas and other simulations that teach new staff members how to think and act quickly in unexpected emergency situations.

How important is the Certified Emergency Nurse credential, conferred by the Board of Certification for Emergency Nursing (BCEN)? Although the ENA endorses earning the CEN, board certification is not required to work in emergency nursing, and most of the nurses interviewed for this article agree that the CEN does not necessarily increase a nurse’s chance of being hired over a candidate without certification. Still, says Kuska, “I think that having to take the certification exam and keep up with the CEUs makes you a more well-rounded nurse. Having those letters after your name shows that you are truly committed to your specialty.”

Reaping the Rewards

Despite all the excitement, variety and respect that emergency nurses enjoy, this career is not for everybody. “You will see horrible, terrible things in the ED—gunshots, stabbings, burns, child abuse, car crash victims and more,” Marett cautions. “But it does have exceptional rewards that come when you make a real impact in saving someone’s life.”

Thelma Kuska couldn’t agree more. “It’s very rewarding, because you make decisions that really make a life-or-death difference,” she says. “If you’re an astute nurse who knows what to look for, you can really feel like, ‘Wow, I made a difference today!’

“For example, suppose a woman of child-bearing age comes in complaining of severe abdominal pain. Her blood pressure’s a little low; her pulse is a little fast. You ask when her last period was and she says, ‘Five or six weeks ago.’ So you put the pieces together and think, ‘Maybe it’s an ectopic pregnancy.’ You make the decision and tell the ER doctor, ‘I think we need an OB consult.’ There have been many times when I’ve picked up on something like that and the doctor told me, ‘Because of you, that patient went to the operating room right away. You saved a life today.’”

For More Information About Careers in Emergency Nursing

Emergency Nurses Association

915 Lee Street

Des Plaines, IL 60016-6569

Phone: (800) 900-9659

Fax: (847) 460-4001

Web site:

The ENA’s mission statement emphasizes that “respect for diversity of patients and colleagues is inherent to emergency nursing practice and emergency care.” According to George Velianoff, DNS, RN, CHE, the association’s deputy executive director of nursing, “We are very concerned about recruiting more nurses of color into the profession. There is a tremendous need for more minority emergency nurses.”

The ENA offers many resources for current and potential emergency nurses, including:


  • Access to the latest scientific research concerning emergency care


  • Networking opportunities with key governmental, academic and professional contacts


  • Educational programs, including an emergency nursing core curriculum and continuing education courses


  • The Journal of Emergency Nursing and other publications


  • An annual educational and networking meeting


  • Undergraduate and advanced educational scholarships