At its annual conference earlier this month, the National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists (NACNS) announced that Susan Smith, DNP, APRN, ACNS-BC Adult Clinical Nurse Specialist at Baylor University Medical Center, Critical Care Services in Dallas, Texas, has been elected to the 2018-2019 NACNS Board of Directors. Dr. Smith has been a member of NACNS since 2009.
A clinical nurse specialist (CNS) for more than 20 years, she serves the 113 critical care beds housed within four intensive care units at Baylor University Medical Center—a busy academic medical center and one of the largest hospital networks in Texas. In addition, she regularly precepts and mentors clinical nurse specialist and Doctor of Nursing Practice students. She also chairs the Baylor Scott & White Health system’s Critical Care Council.
Dr. Smith has been the Chair of the NACNS Malnutrition Task Force since the group’s inception in December 2015. She is an active member of the Texas Clinical Nurse Specialists (TxCNS) and serves as the group’s current Research Committee Chair. She was also the President of the Texas Clinical Nurse Specialists from 2013 to 2014 and currently chairs the group’s Research Committee.
“I am excited to join the NACNS board,” said Dr. Smith. “I’m looking forward to helping address some of the pressing issues facing clinical nurse specialists on a national scale, especially increasing consistency of APRN Consensus Model implementation across the country. Clinical nurse specialists have a unique set of skills and I’m eager to add my voice to the chorus of CNSs showing how we positively impact and improve health care.”
“We are so pleased to have Susan join our board of directors,” said NACNS Executive Director Melinda Mercer Ray, MSN. “Her history of focusing on patients and improving outcomes as well as her depth of knowledge about malnutrition and the adult patient will be a huge asset as we work to strengthen and solidify the impact clinical nurse specialists have in health care today.”
In addition to NACNS and TxCNS, Smith is a current member of the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses and its Dallas County Chapter, the American Nurses Association, the Texas Nurses Association, Sigma Theta Tau, Beta Chapter; Society of Critical Care Medicine and the Texas Chapter of the Society of Critical Care Medicine and served as that group’s nursing representative from 2014-2017. She is also a member of the Texas Nurses Association APRN Committee.
Dr. Smith earned her DNP from Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, Texas; her MS in Nursing from Binghamton University in New York; and her BSN from Ohio Wesleyan University in Delaware, Ohio. The Society of Critical Care Medicine awarded Smith Presidential Citations in 2016, 2017, and 2018. She was the D Magazine Excellence in Nursing Award Winner: Adult Intensive Care in 2015.
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Founded in 1995, The National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists is the only association representing the clinical nurse specialist (CNS). CNSs are advanced practice registered nurses who work in a variety of specialties to ensure high-quality, evidence-based, patient-centered care. As leaders in health care settings, CNSs provide direct patient care and lead initiatives to improve care and clinical outcomes, and reduce costs. NACNS is dedicated to advancing CNS practice and education, removing certification and regulatory barriers, and assuring the public access to quality CNS services.