Topic 5DQ 1.3

Please respond with a paragraph to the following question, add citations and references:

The Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL) role was developed to “engage highly skilled clinicians in outcomes-based practice and quality improvement strategies” (American Association of Colleges of Nursing, n.d.). CNLs are masters-prepared nurses who must sit for and pass the CNL Certification Examination. They are not management, administration, or APRNs, but leaders in healthcare delivery. They oversee care coordination of a patient cohort as part of the interdisciplinary team and may provide direct patient care for complex patients. They implement evidence-based practice, evaluate patient outcomes, and make changes to care plans. Key functions include acting as a resource for other nurses, serving as the point of communication for issues related to the care of the patient cohort, performing a comprehensive assessment of the patient and caregiver, ongoing assessment and modification of the care plan, responsibility for care delivered and patient outcomes, and patient/family education (Spross et al., 2004). One example of a CNL’s work comes from Kathy Faber, a NICU CNL who addressed low patient satisfaction scores (Faber, 2013). Her assessments revealed that continuity of care was lacking in her unit, so she developed a Relationship Based Care (RBC) model with care continuity at its forefront. Groups of nurses were assigned to each 6-bed pod, and primary nurses were assigned to each infant throughout their hospitalization. This ensured that the infants were cared for by the same nurses, which increased parent’s confidence in the nurses, and raised the satisfaction scores.


American Association of Colleges of Nursing (n.d.). CNL frequently asked questions. Retrieved from

Spross, J. et al. (2004). Working statement comparing the clinical nurse leaders and clinical nurse specialist roles: similarities, differences and complementarities. Retrieved from…

Faber, K. (2013). Relationship-based care in the neonatal intensive care unit. Creative Nursing,19(4). Retrieved from…