March 19 is Certified Nurses Day, a worldwide celebration of nurses who commit themselves to becoming board certified in a nursing specialty. Fairview Health Services congratulates the hundreds of nurses across our system who have earned certification in their specialty.

No matter which certification is obtained, one of the principal results is better care for our patients.

“Nurses can hold certifications across all types of care environments,” explains Chris Kissell, RN, BSN, MBA, director of ambulatory nursing. “A certification is the knowledge of new, current best practices in nursing that are applicable to a specific patient population in a particular care environment. Nursing certifications translate to higher quality and safer patient care.”

“Being certified not only shows a nurse’s competence and skill in their practice, but their commitment to the nursing profession, which resonates with our patients and families” says Jody Rock, who holds a nurse executive certification and is director of perinatal services at University of Minnesota Medical Center.
 
A journey together

The preparation for a certification exam—and maintenance of a certification—demands effort, time and energy. Instead of spending time studying alone, a group of nurses at Fairview Lakes Medical Center took a community approach to certification.

Denise Carriker, BSN, RN, CNOR, had previously been certified in critical care nursing. When she joined the operating room team at Fairview Lakes Medical Center, she asked her colleagues if they wanted to work toward an operating room nursing certification.

Denise launched a study group with fellow nurses. They shared the responsibility of tracking down recommended study resources, and met at each other’s houses in the evenings for two months. Over snacks, they reviewed study materials and talked through questions and rationales out loud.

“It was a much better experience going through the certification study process as a group than on my own,” says Denise. “You have a support network and can ask questions—you feel like you’re in it together. That, and you study harder with a little friendly competition!”

When the time came to take the certification exam, some of the group decided to make a day trip out of the experience, heading to Duluth to take the test and then enjoying the rest of the day. So far, six Fairview Lakes Medical Center operating room nurses have been certified.

“Since receiving our certifications, I see new confidence in each of us,” says Denise. “It makes you feel good about yourself, knowing you can pass something like that.”

Join our team

Are you a nurse looking for career development opportunities? Fairview offers several resources to help our nurses become certified in their specialty or pursue advanced education. Connect with our recruiting team at careers@fairview.org to learn if we have the right career opportunity for you.