Sep 30, 2014

Trustee Magazine Makes the Case for Nurse Leadership

Trustee magazine, a publication of the American Hospital Association, in 2014 published two articles about nurses serving on boards of directors. Both stories stressed the fact that nurses make up only 6 percent of hospital boards.

“The Case for a Nurse Trustee” argues that “boards lack an authority on the patient experience, quality and safety, and the largest part of the hospital workforce” without the nurse perspective and that “nurses do own the patient experience.” The article calls for mid-career nurses to start prepping themselves for possible board roles now. The September cover story, “The Case for a Nurse Trustee,” highlights a “missing organizational and clinical sensibility” that nurses bring to boards. A companion story, “Ready to Serve,” describes governance programs training nurses to serve on boards.

  1. Networking with individuals already on boards.
  2. Taking advantage of leadership courses.
  3. Brushing up on presentation skills.

The article, “Ready to Serve,” reports on The Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action’s push to add 10,000 nurses to boards around the country by 2020 and the Texas Team’s Nurses on Boards Training Workshop. The workshop allows the Texas Team to keep a list of potential nurse board members so that they can share with health-related boards if a board position opens.

Susan Hassmiller, director of the Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action and senior adviser at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, was interviewed for the article and suggests , “If you want to be on a board and you’re not noticed, then ask someone to nominate you.”

Read “The Case for a Nurse Trustee” article here.

Read the full “Ready to Serve” article here.