Inside best practice: Support and increase nursing certification

HCPro's Weekly Update on the ANCC Magnet Recognition Program®*, March 3, 2009

As Edward Hospital and Health Services in Naperville, IL, pursued ANCC Magnet Recognition Program® redesignation, the emergency department leadership team, which consists of physicians, clinical directors, and educators, wanted to increase nursing certification. Under Component II: Structural empowerment, organization’s pursuing designation or redesignation are expected to support and increase nursing certification. The ED leadership team focused on this expectation by starting a certification campaign with a slogan. “Got CEN?” was featured on T-shirts, which were handed out to ED staff members during Nurses Week. And for staff nurses who had their CEN, buttons were made that read “I do!”

For nurses who did not have their CEN, the ED leadership team promoted and supported certification on the unit by:

  • Posting certified staff nurses’ pictures on a bulletin board with a note asking, “Are you next?”
  • Hanging a banner above the entrance into the ED that featured the name of a staff nurse when he or she passed the exam
  • E-mailing all staff members to announce when someone achieved certification
  • Sending motivational letters to staff nurses’ homes after they sat for the review course, urging them to sign up for the exam
  • Holding nurses accountable by consistently asking “Are you signed up yet?”

Source: HCPro’s Advisor on the ANCC Magnet Recognition Program®, March 2009 issue. Don't have a subscription? Take a look at the benefits of becoming a member of HCPro’s Resource Center for the ANCC Magnet Recognition Program®.

Editor’s note: Do you have a best practice you would like to share? E-mail them to associate editor Cameran Erny at and see your name in print!

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