Pillars of nursing: Cadmus passes on leadership, healthcare knowledge

Edna Cadmus, RN, PhD, NEA-BC, FAAN, is a clinical professor, specialty director, nursing leadership program at Rutgers University’s College of Nursing, Newark, N.J., and serves as co-leader for the New Jersey Action Coalition and as a board member of the Organization of Nurse Executives/New Jersey.

Influencing nurses in all roles to leverage their leadership capabilities in order to transform healthcare has been a hallmark of her career. She created the graduate level leadership track at Rutgers; leads the state’s action coalition in making changes in the healthcare system, according to the landmark IOM report, “The Future of Nursing: Leading Change and Advancing Health” and its recommendations; and influences nurses at the state level to take leadership roles in healthcare.

“Leadership engagement in the issues that face healthcare in New Jersey is best served when there is clear direction and nurses who are willing to step up to the plate,” she said. “While this work is not done, it is well on its way because of the nursing leaders in this state.”

As CNO for 16 years at Englewood (N.J.) Hospital and Medical Center, Cadmus also oversaw bedside nurses progress to more than 68% having a BSN or higher; a leadership team that was 100% master’s prepared; and a hospital that received Magnet designation three times.

The shift from cost to quality has moved nursing into the forefront in leading quality initiatives and making a difference in patient care, according to Cadmus. “The passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act has required healthcare to redefine itself, and nurses have the capability and capacity to adapt to new environments, such as transition of care models and primary care, to bridge the gaps in care,” said Cadmus, who acknowledges home care and long-term care are prime areas of focus as healthcare moves forward.

Recognizing that Magnet designation and Pathways to Excellence standards create frameworks for nursing leaders to change healthcare in practice, education and research, Cadmus believes these standards resonate with nurses and help make their contributions visible to their healthcare organizations.

Janice Petrella Lynch, RN, MSN, is a regional nurse executive for Nurse.com.

EDITOR’S NOTE: In recognition of the 25th anniversary of Nurse.com (Nursing Spectrum), the magazine will celebrate 25 key members of the New York/New Jersey nursing community in 2013.

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