Healthcare delivery – particularly in operating rooms across the country – changes rapidly each year, requiring nurses to innovate solutions for patients that are both effective and practical for the operating room (OR) team to implement. To help provide OR nurses with the skills needed to achieve this, the Association of periOperative Registered Nurses’ (AORN) created the Nurse Executive Leadership Seminar (NELS) series. The series aims to give operating room nurses the skills needed to balance providing high-quality patient care while maintaining a profitable practice. Ethicon, Inc., a medical device subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, began sponsoring the Nurse Executive Leadership Seminar series in 2012. Since then, AORN and the Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices Companies have worked together to grow and evolve the series to ensure perioperative nurses receive the necessary education to continue refining and improving OR processes.
“The sponsorship was developed due to Ethicon, Inc.’s understanding of the important role of nurses not only to patients, but the entire OR team,” said Peggy Berkery, manager of clinical education at Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices Companies.
The partnership between Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices Companies and AORN results in two seminar series each year, and exemplifies the longstanding support for nurse education and leadership held by Ethicon and other Johnson & Johnson brands in an effort to ultimately change the trajectory of health for humanity. In addition to co-sponsoring the Nurse Executive Leadership Seminar in the spring and fall each year, Ethicon has worked hand-in-hand with AORN to establish an annual executive roundtable, in which healthcare executives come together to discuss the top issues OR teams face on the job.
Melissa Fischer, MSN, RN, CNOR, senior manager of clinical education at Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices Companies, believes perioperative nurses are in a unique position to solve problems and innovate solutions in the OR because of their extensive combined knowledge of patients, products, and procedures.
“Nurses often see the patient in a different way than industry and physicians do,” Melissa said. “I find that nurses in the OR can visualize ways to innovate patient safety but do not always know how to bring their ideas forward. Having support from Johnson & Johnson empowers nurses to express these innovative ideas, which may lead to better care and surgical outcomes.”
In 2018, AORN’s spring Nurse Executive Leadership Seminar series, titled Innovation, Optimization, and Transformation in the Perioperative Setting, was hosted in 10 U.S. cities, bringing together over 500 nurse executive attendees. This spring, AORN began offering the series for continuing education credits.
“The Johnson & Johnson team’s commitment to patient safety provided AORN the resources to support leadership development for perioperative nurse executives and develop the Nurse Executive Leadership Seminar series. This program has influenced the professional development of thousands of nurse managers in operating rooms across the U.S.,” said AORN CEO and executive director Linda Groah, MSN, RN, CNOR, NEA-BC, FAAN.
The Nurse Executive Leadership Seminar consistently rotates through topics to ensure nurse leaders are provided new opportunities to learn each year. Melissa shared, “The sessions are interactive, and the networking between nurses and industry is a unique opportunity for learning on both sides.”
Looking ahead, the Fall Nurse Executive Leadership Seminar will focus on the necessary collaboration between OR teams and the Sterile Processing Department (SPD). Nurse, SPD, material management, and infection prevention leaders are invited to discuss the latest evidence-based practices related to sterilization, staff education required, monitoring methods, and process improvement to ensure each patient receives optimum care.
To learn more about the Nurse Executive Leadership Seminar series, visit the AORN website or watch the video below.