Kelly graduated from Iowa State University with her Bachelor’s degree in Child and Family Services and her Master’s in Clinical Psychology from Benedictine University in Lisle. She has worked in a variety of clinical positions with various populations including multiple roles in the treatment of sex offenders and working in the chemical dependency field. In addition to this, Kelly has worked in the corrections field, with the homeless population and with wards of the state. In her spare time, she teaches and practices self-care by means of oil on canvas painting.
Promoting Excellence in Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing:
How Linden Oaks Nurses are Leading the Way
By: Kelly Bryant, MS, BSN, RN-BC, NEA-BC, CNE, Director, Clinical Excellence/Magnet Program Director, Linden Oaks Behavioral Health
Nurses are recognized as key members of the interdisciplinary healthcare team, vital to redesigning health care in the United States (IOM, 2010). As the complexity of healthcare increases, higher levels of education and training are required to assure provision of high standards of safe, effective, quality care for patients and families.
National board certification for nurses and sharing best practices through professional nursing organizations are ways in which nurses can demonstrate their knowledge, skills and abilities to improve care. Certification exemplifies a commitment to nursing excellence and better patient outcomes through attainment of the highest credentials in a specialty area.
In 2014, Linden Oaks Behavioral Health embarked on a journey to foster a culture that encouraged higher certification for our nurses. As part of this initiative, we focused on best practice sharing in designated specialty areas including psychiatric nursing, gerontological nursing, addictions nursing, nursing professional development, and nursing administration. At the end of 2014, we had 29 nurses who had attained specialty certification.
Beginning in 2015, Linden Oaks implemented a formalized plan to increase the number of certified nurses on staff. Our overall goal was to acknowledge the specialty expertise of our nurses, validate their competency, enhance patient safety, and recognize their professional commitment to lifelong learning.
We did this, in part, through participation in the Success Pays Program
sponsored by the American Nurse Credentialing Center (ANCC), a program which helps hospitals facilitate the provision of onsite certification review courses. In 2015, an additional 33 nurses earned their specialty certification through ANCC.
In 2016, we are continuing our participation in this program and through February we have had another six nurses who have obtained certification.
As part of our goal to recognize higher education, this year we are holding a special celebration event on March 17 to recognize the extra efforts of the certified nurses and their dedication to achieving higher credentials. This celebration is a part of the nationally recognized Certified Nurses Day celebration endorsed by ANCC.
This past weekend, Linden Oaks sponsored the 15th Annual Illinois State Meeting for Psychiatric Nursing at the Northwestern Memorial Hospital Prentice Conference Center in Chicago, IL. In addition to our nurse representation at the conference, we were accepted to give three poster presentations disseminating behavioral health best practice information.
Linden Oaks has been a major supporter of the Illinois Chapter of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association (APNA) and this year we also presented at the APNA’s 29th Annual Conference in Orlando, FL. These presentation opportunities are, in part, due to the increased dedication of our staff and organization to attain higher certification over the past few years.
We are proud of each of our nurses and the exceptional care they provide to our patients and families and their dedication to excellence in psychiatric mental health nursing.
- ANCC Commission on Certification, January 2008
- Institute of Medicine. (2010). The future of nursing; leading change, advancing health. Report recommendations.