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Clinical Nurse Specialist

What is a Clinical Nurse Specialist?
A Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS) functions in the role of expert clinician, educator, consultant, case manager and researcher.  In collaboration with the medical and nursing staff, the CNS monitors the clinical care of patients and provides clinical support to improve patient care and patient outcomes.  The CNS is a mentor, patient advocate, change agent, leader and cost effective practitioner.

What this means for our Unit

  1. Develops and assists in the implementation of nursing care plans and standards to specific needs of the patient.
  2. Assists and provides direction to nursing staff.
  3. Models excellence in nursing through advance concepts in assessment, diagnosis, planning, intervention and evaluation of perceived, actual, or potential problems.
  4. Completes physical and history on patients as indicated.
  5. Provides approved medical services, including suture removal and complex wound care.

Educator

  1. Assists patients, their significant others, and family in the acquisition of information related to health and wellness, including the prevention of illness and injury.
  2. Serves as a resource to nursing staff, nursing students, and other health care personnel in the acquisition of knowledge and skills related to nursing knowledge.
  3. Develops and implements educational information, materials, and programs for discharge planning and teaching of health care consumers.
  4. Contributes to professional nursing literature by publishing scholarly works.
  5. Contributes to nursing education as a faculty member.

Researcher

  1. Expands the scientific base of nursing practice by conducting and facilitating nursing research.
  2. Disseminates research findings through presentations and publications.
  3. Critically analyzes current nursing research methods and results for utilization in the expansion and improvement of patient care and patient outcomes.

Consultant
Collaborates with clinical nurses and other members of the health care team to problem solve complex clinical situations for specialty needs of patients.  Clinical nurse specialists have a great deal of hands-on nursing experience (“clinical experience”) as well as a graduate degree in nursing.

So how do we spend our time? When we are not in a nursing area, we act as consultants on nursing committees; write patient education materials; educate new employees; write, review and revise nursing procedures; represent Womack Army Medical Center at national conferences; provide education for the community; organize special projects; and survey literature for current research findings.

If a nurse needs information about an unusual diagnosis or a new piece of equipment, a clinical nurse specialist will do the research. Many new products are introduced or researched to keep WAMC up-to-date with the latest in medical technology.

Clinical Nurse Specialist
Phone: (910) 907-8318
Fax:  (910) 907-8148