The CNS Communiqué is an electronic publication of the National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists. The purpose of this publication is to keep our members updated on the NACNS headquarters news; connect our members with fast-breaking clinical news; and update clinical nurse specialists on state and federal legislative actions.

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Featured Headline

  1. Win one of two free iPads – Clinical Nurse Specialist Census

Headquarters News

  1. 13th Annual NACNS Clinical Nurse Specialist Summit and First Educator’s Forum
  2. 2014 NACNS Series Webinar:  Cutting Edge Information for the Clinical Nurse Specialist
  3. 2015 – NACNS Anniversary and Annual Conference

Association News

  1. Modern Healthcare Identifies 3 Nurses as 100 Most Influential People in Healthcare

Clinical News

  1. Ebola Epidemic in Western Africa
  2. September is Emergency Preparedness Month
  3. Lupin Containing Products Can Be an Issue for Peanut Allergy Sufferers

Federal and State Policy News

  1. NACNS Comments on the Proposed Rule to Related to Revisions to Payment Policies Under the Physician Fee Schedule, etc

Featured Headline

1. Win an iPad -  Clinical Nurse Specialist Census

1NACNS has successfully launched the first 2014 CNS Census. The Census is designed to gather national-level data on all individuals that completed a CNS education programs. The individuals do NOT need to be employed currently as a CNS. This Census is designed to be beyond the NACNS membership, and therefore relies on word-of-mouth to get a large number of CNSs to respond. This Survey monkey-style tool is designed to capture demographic, practice and education data on those that complete the survey.

We need the help of the Affiliates to get the word out. Please spread the word!

Results of the CNS Census will be published in the Clinical Nurse Specialist: The International Journal for Advanced Nursing Practice. The survey will be open until December 31, 2014. NACNS is pleased to announce that the Journal and a member of the NACNS Board have each offered an iPad for a drawing. A drawing for 2 iPads will happen at the end of the census! To take the survey go to: and look for the button on the left side of the homepage.

Headquarters News

2. Clinical Nurse Specialist Educators’ Forum and First Annual Educator’s Forum

The NACNS Clinical Nurse Specialist Educators’ Forum was held in conjunction with the 13th Annual NACNS Clinical Nurse Specialist Summit on Monday, July 21, 2014 in Washington, DC. This meeting provided an opportunity for clinical nurse specialist faculty to discuss issues of concern to them as they work to address the changing world of clinical nurse specialist practice. It was an excellent brainstorming session – an opportunity to learn from each other and help refine our efforts to what is most helpful for our clinical nurse specialist educators and students. With a limit of 25 attendees, NACNS welcomed a full complement of educators and faculty members.

The 13th Annual NACNS Clinical Nurse Specialist Summit was held on Tuesday, July 22, 2014 in Washington, DC. We met our goal of just over 60 participants that included members, students, colleagues from other organizations and NACNS Board of Directors representatives. The 13th Annual NACNS Clinical Nurse Specialist Summit was focused on a discussion of the issues that the clinical nurse specialist faces with the implementation of health care reform and the continued implementation of the APRN Consensus Model. The agenda and speaker slides are available on the NACNS web site.

In the past, NACNS held the Summit as an annual invitational meeting for specialty nursing organizations representing CNSs, nursing leaders and other colleague organizations. The agenda for these meetings was designed to gather input from these important constituents to help the NACNS leadership adopt priorities for the Association. In 2012, NACNS changed the Summit to allow for open registration from the NACNS membership and other constituents.

3. 2014 NACNS Series Webinar: Cutting Edge Information for the Clinical Nurse Specialist – Register for Next Session!!

September 24, 2014 - CNS Competencies: Taking the Lead in Clinical Alarm Management - 3:00 pm EST. 1.0 Contact hours* will be awarded for this webinar. The cost for this webinar is $45.00 for members and $60.00 for non-members. A discount is available if you register for the two alarm fatigue sessions – September 24 and December 10.

This webinar is the first of two sessions on alarm fatigue, a commonly occurring condition in which alarms are ignored or silenced, placing the patient at risk. The clinical nurse specialist (CNS) is the ideal health care provider to identify and implement changes in the health care delivery system to address the potential negative impact of alarm fatigue.  Clinical experts and members of the NACNS Board appointed Alarm Fatigue Task Force will address key considerations and resources for the CNS working to address this important patient safety issue. Participants on these webinars will be able to interact with the speakers through Q & A.

The first webinar will present the evidence base for addressing the problem, regulatory issues, and the technologic and commercial challenges clinical nurse specialists face related to alarm management. The second webinar on this topic, Clinical Nurse Specialist Competencies: Positioning Yourself to Close the Clinical Alarm Gap, is scheduled for December 10 at 3:00pm EST and will focus on applying the CNS role competencies to risk assessment, gap analysis and proposing team and system based solutions within the clinical setting. An overview of a toolkit designed specifically to provide resources for the CNS to address this problem will also be presented.

The third webinar scheduled for this fall is November 12, 2014 3 - The Cutting Edge of Diabetes Management – Pharmacology CE offered.

Registration for individual sessions:
$45 per webinar for NACNS Members
$60 per webinar for Non-Members
$30 per webinar for Students (Student ID Required)

A 20% discount is available if you register for the 2 Alarm Fatigue webinars at the same time – the September 24 and the December 10 dates. The reduced cost for these two session for members would be- $72.00 and for non-member - $108.00.

To register, visit or register online. Once you login (different credentials from your members-only login), click on “Online Store” on the left side of the page. Complete webinar descriptions are available online. If you prefer to register by phone, please call Jonathan Uitto at 215-320-3881.

* 1.0 Contact hours will be awarded for this session.

This continuing nursing education activity was approved by the PA State Nurses Association, an accredited approver by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation. Criteria for successful completion includes attendance at minimum, of one session during the NACNS Annual Meeting and submission of a completed CE tracker triplicate form to the registration desk prior to the end of the conference. The planning committee members and speakers have declared no conflict of interest. Approval of the continuing education activity does not imply endorsement by the provider, ANCC or PA State Nurses Association.

4. Celebrate the NACNS 20th Anniversary in 2015

Yes, it has been 20 years! And the NACNS Board of Directors is planning on recognizing and celebrating our history and success throughout the 2015, but specifically at the NACNS 2015 Annual Conference. The theme for this meeting is, "The Clinical Nurse Specialists: The Essence of Transitional Health Care."  This meeting is being held at the Loews Coronado Bay Resort in San Diego, California. This meeting hotel will allow for an excellent educational experience as well as relaxation and exploration of beautiful Southern California. The hotel offers three pools, a sand beach and a spa. So plan now for a 20th anniversary celebration that will allow you to take care of your mind and body! The Loews Coronado Bay Resort caters to relaxation and will allow all of us to learn, network and relax. Coronado Island is a 10 minute cab ride from downtown San Diego. This will give everyone the best of both worlds – shopping and restaurants in San Diego and pampering and beautiful views on Coronado Island. Do consider extending your trip by a day to appreciate the beauty of this area.

Plan on submitting a poster, a presentation or encourage your facility to exhibit! We have intentionally moved the dates for session/presentation and poster applications to earlier in the year. This will allow the planning committee more time to review and select your submissions.

Please visit our website, as more information becomes available.

Association News

5. Modern Healthcare Identifies 3 Nurses Among 100 Most Influential People in Healthcare

Three nurses have made the Modern Healthcare list of the 100 Most Influential People in Healthcare – Marilyn Tavenner, Marla Weston and Sister Carol Keehan. Marilyn Tavenner came in as 5th on the list and currently holds the position of the Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid. Marla Weston, ANA’s CEO is on the list for the first time and was rated as 45th. Sister Carol Keehan came in at 34th and is the CEO of the Catholic Health Association. NACNS wishes to extend our congratulations to these three excellent nurse leaders.

Clinical News

6. World Health Organization/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Monitor Growth of Ebola Virus Epidemic

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have established a comprehensive, up-to-the-minute resources available from – for those interested in monitoring the issues related to the recent Ebola virus outbreak in the West African nations of Sierra Leone, Guinea, Nigeria and Liberia. This fast-acting devastating virus has affected 3,069 with 1,552 confirmed deaths as of August 28, 2014. This is a 55-60% mortality rate. This is the largest known outbreak of Ebola virus and the first recorded outbreak in West Africa.

The resources provided by the CDC explain and track the outbreak and provide information for health care providers that may take care of a patient who has recently traveled to these areas of Africa. There is a 21 day incubation period for the virus. The virus is spread by direct contact with body fluids of an infected individual. In addition, two missionary health care professionals from West Africa were transported from Africa to a hospital in Atlanta and is receiving experimental treatment for Ebola. Both individuals were discharged. As of August 10, 2014 no cases have been confirmed as caused by the Ebola virus in the U.S. Vigilance is required to identify potential cases of the virus and decrease the potential of transmission of the disease.

The CDC recommends: Healthcare providers should be alert for and evaluate suspected patients for Ebola virus infection who have both consistent symptoms and risk factors as follows: 1) Clinical criteria, which includes fever of greater than 38.6 degrees Celsius or 101.5 degrees Fahrenheit, and additional symptoms such as severe headache, muscle pain, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, or unexplained hemorrhage; AND 2) Epidemiologic risk factors within the past 3 weeks before the onset of symptoms, such as contact with blood or other body fluids of a patient known to have or suspected to have EVD; residence in—or travel to—an area where EVD transmission is active; or direct handling of bats, rodents, or primates from disease-endemic areas. Malaria diagnostics should also be a part of initial testing because it is a common cause of febrile illness in persons with a travel history to the affected countries.

The CDC has developed comprehensive portfolio of resources for the health care worker. Please keep apprised of the travel alerts and updates on this critical West African epidemic.

7. September is Emergency Preparedness Month – Are You Prepared?

Throughout September there will be activities across the country to promote emergency preparedness. More than 3,000 organizations – national, regional, and local public and private organizations – are supporting emergency preparedness efforts and encouraging all Americans to take action. September 2014 marks the eleventh annual National Preparedness Month, sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency in the US Department of Homeland Security. One goal of Homeland Security is to educate the public about how to prepare for emergencies, including natural disasters, mass casualties, biological and chemical threats, radiation emergencies, and terrorist attacks.

Join the effort! Visit the CDC Web site for "Emergency Preparedness and Response". During the year’s Emergency Preparedness Month the focus is on: 

In collaboration with the American Red Cross, CDC's Web site, Emergency Preparedness and You identifies and answers common questions about preparing for unexpected events, including:

The Emergency Preparedness and Response offers additional information and resources under topics such as hurricane preparedness, extreme heat, and bioterrorism. CDC continually updates information on recent outbreaks and incidents, and lists emergency resources for the general public as well as for clinicians and public health professionals.

8. FDA Raises Awareness on Lupin – A Legume Used in Many Gluten-Free Products

3Lupin (sometimes called “lupine”) is a legume that is found in a number of food products, particularly those that are gluten-free. Lupin is a legume that is in the same family as the peanut. Therefore, ingesting this legume or a product that includes this legume may have an impact on the health of an individual with a peanut allergy, or may arise as an isolated allergy. Studies have shown that those who are allergic to peanuts have a greater chance of being allergic to lupin. Many parents of children with peanut allergies diligently read labels and avoid exposure to peanuts/peanut products. It is important to inform patients and others with known peanut allergies to be cautious with the ingestion or exposure to lupine containing products.

Although lupin is a food staple for many Europeans—who may be more aware of its allergenic properties and are accustomed to seeing it listed as a food ingredient—it is relatively new to the U.S. market. Some Americans may not have heard of this legume, which can be found in the form of lupini beans at Italian and other ethnic specialty stores, as well as in packaged food products.

The FDA indicates that lupin is a food staple for many Europeans—who may be more aware of its allergenic properties and are accustomed to seeing it listed as a food ingredient—it is relatively new to the U.S. market. Some Americans may not have heard of this legume, which can be found in the form of lupini beans at Italian and other ethnic specialty stores, as well as in packaged food products.

Lupin is making its way into American products through the increased demand for gluten-free products. Lupin-derived ingredients are good substitutes for gluten-containing flours and are frequently being used in gluten-free products. Companies producing these gluten-free products list the lupin or lupine in the product, but consumers may not be aware of what lupin is and its potential to be a harmful allergen to those with peanut allergies.

Because of the potential consumer knowledge gap related lupin the FDA is actively monitoring complaints of lupin allergies by U.S. consumers. Please report or encourage others who experience issue to report lupin-related or suspected lupine-related adverse events to the FDA by phone at 240-402-2405 or by email at

Federal and State Policy

9. NACNS Comments on the Proposed Rule to Related to Revisions to Payment Policies Under the Physician Fee Schedule, Clinical Laboratory Fee Schedule, Access to Identifiable Data for the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation Models & Other Revisions to Part B for CY 2015

NACNS submitted comments on September 2, 2014 regarding the importance and role of the CNS in health care innovation and have the ability to improve quality and reduce costs in our healthcare system. NACNS specifically commented on the need to include APRN providers in the CMS Physician Compare Website. For instance, under primary care, the options for a clinical nurse specialist or a nurse practitioner are not currently available. In addition, under anesthesiology, a certified registered nurse anesthetist is not identified. In addition, NACNS advocated for the use of the following definition for a CNS - "The clinical nurse specialist is an individual prepared at the master's or doctoral level as a clinical nurse specialist from an accredited educational institution and/or holds an advanced degree in nursing from an accredited educational institution and is recognized by their state as a clinical nurse specialist."

NACNS also identified the need to modernize the name of the "Physician Compare" Website to "Provider Compare" or “Health Care Provider" Website. 


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The CNS Communiqué is an electronic publication of the National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists.
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