One of the toughest decisions that everyone faces is what career to choose. It takes a lot of time, energy and soul searching to find the perfect career choice. There are several reasons for choosing a career including financial security, fame and fortune. However, one of the best and most rewarding reasons for choosing a career is because it helps others, which is why hundreds of people have decided to become nurse leaders.
Nurse leaders are “nurse practitioners (NP) who can inspire others to work together in pursuit of a common goal, such as enhanced patient care. Leadership can be formal, wherein authority is given by the health care organization; or it can be informal, and the NP increases the “efficiency of the work flow,” according to the book, ¨Effective Leadership and Management in Nursing”.” (Roskoski) As in all other fields of medicine there are several types of nurse leaders including those that specializes in clinical system management. These specialized nurse leaders goals are focuses mainly on the improvement on the quality of care patients receive and to ensure that nurses are prepared to meet the demands associated with a constantly changing healthcare system. This means making sure that they are able to educate nurses under their leadership, that all nurses licenses as well as certifications are up to date as well as ensuring are properly trained when new procedures are implemented. Nurse leaders must also be prepared to take classes in addition, to the masters’ degree in nursing to ensure that they are educating their nurses in the most effective and up to date methodologies of the field. Becoming a certified nurse leader also helps in your duties because it signifies to your employers, staff and patients that you have successfully completed and passed specialized as well as intense training that is vital to your field of study. Certification also lets others know that you are ready to take on the duties and challenges associated with you profession. In addition, nurse leaders should possess certain competences that will enable them to provide the best quality of care for both their staff and patients.

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One competence is managing patient care deliveries. Managing patient care deliveries involves “designing, initiating and evaluating individualized systems of care using multiple data sources; assuming accountability for patient care outcomes related to nursing care provision; and identifying patterns of problem occurrence and predicts needed interventions.” (nche.edu, 2005) Another competence nurse leaders should possess is the ability to have a pharmacological management knowledge, as well as a knowledge of “agency standards, professional issues and health care policy which enables the CNL to facilitate decisions about patients that are timely and appropriate.” (The University of Alabama) Clinical system management nurse leaders must also have the ability to recognize “the importance of the CNL as the lateral integrator of care which involves improved communication, decreased fragmentation, and the facilitation and coordination of care.” (The University of Alabama)

In order to become a successful and efficient nursing leader, you must have the proper training, certification and competences. These tools will allow you to make the necessary decisions and changes necessary to ensure that your staff and the patients that they care for are getting the best treatment possible, resulting in a happy and healthy life.

    References
  • Roskoski, J. (n.d.). What is nursing leadership?. Retrieved from http://www.ehow.com
  • SM. (2005). Clinical nurse leader. (Pdf, Illinois State)Retrieved from http://nursing.illinoisstate.edu/
  • nche.edu. (2005). Clinical nurse leader competencies. (Master’s thesis, NCHE) Retrieved from http://apps.aacn.nche.edu/
  • The University of Alabama. (n.d.). Graduate program – clinical nurse leader. Retrieved from http://nursing.ua.edu/
  • Millar, K. (2012, October 4). The Importance of a Nursing Certification. Retrieved March 16, 2014, from http://ezinearticles.com/