Magnet Moment: Nursing Certifications Linked to Better Patient Outcomes and Professional Satisfaction
A growing body of research shows a connection between nursing certification and knowledge, skills and judgment that affect patient outcomes, according to the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC).1
- ANCC cites the following examples:
- Nurses certified in wound care had more knowledge about the classification of pressure ulcers, a great benefit to patient care.
- Fewer falls occur on intensive care units when a higher number of certified nurses are on staff.
- Oncology-certified nurses had greater knowledge about pain management.
- Nurses certified in emergency and critical better performed better on a simulated mass casualty triage test.
- Hospice-certified nurses performed better in the area of appropriate inhaler use.
Another study demonstrated that units caring for geriatric patients had significantly lower fall rates when two or more nurses had certification in geriatric care. In addition, these nurses had markedly improved work satisfaction.2
A study of the nurse’s role in safety, effectiveness and cost containment in magnetic resonance procedures confirmed the importance of certification in providing optimal patient outcomes.3
In addition to contributing to better patient care, certification offers many professional benefits for nurses. In a survey conducted by the American Board of Nursing Specialties (ABNS), more than 90 percent of 11,000 certified and noncertified nurses agreed that certification enhances professional credibility. More than 80 percent said that certification promotes recognition from peers and other health professionals. In addition, 97 percent of respondents agreed that certification provides personal satisfaction, and 88 percent said that certification enhances personal confidence in clinical abilities.4
A study reported in the American Journal of Nursing explored the connection between certification, career advancement and improved patient outcomes.5
Nursing certification is recognized as a key component of excellence by the ANCC Magnet Recognition® program and is a reflection of both a personal and corporate commitment to nursing excellence.
1. “Why Certify?” a publication of the American Nurses Credentialing Center, a subsidiary of the American Nurses Association, 2010.
2. Lange, J; Wallace, M; Gerard, S; Lovanio, K; Fausty, N; Rychlewicz, S. (2009). Effect of an acute care geriatric educational program on fall rates and nurse work satisfaction. Journal of Education in Nursing, Aug: 40 (8): 371-9.
3. Strand R. (2007). Article review: nursing specialization provides optimal patient outcomes in MR procedures. Journal of Radiology Nursing, Sept., 26(3): 105-6.
4. “Why Certify?” ANCC.
5. Weeks, SK; Ross, A; Roberts, PL. (2006). Certification and Magnet hospitals: will certification advance your career and improve patient outcomes? American Journal of Nursing, Jul., 106(7).74-6