Letter from the President

JO-ANN EASTWOOD PhD, RN, CNS, ACNP-BC, FAHA, FPCNA

University of California Los Angeles School of Nursing, Los Angeles, CA

I am both honored and humbled to assume my role as President of the Preventive Cardiovascular Nurses Association (PCNA). I am committed to amplifying and extending nursing’s voice amidst the chaos of a very complex and challenging health care environment.

I begin this journey with enthusiasm and excitement and some apprehension related to the state of our union and health care. In this uncertain environment, it is more important than ever to unite as nurses and make our voices heard. We hold the hearts and minds of our patients, family and colleagues in our hands. Taking care of each other and ourselves becomes a priority. I am optimistic that nurses will help weather this storm as they have a unique combination of skills including higher education, a strong sense of responsibility, integrity and compassion. Never before has it been so critical that we as nurses maintain confidence and foster intellectual health so we can be respected and recognized as leaders in this challenging and uncertain health care industry. I am so pleased to be a member of PCNA, an organization that remains committed to empowering nurses not just to do their work competently but also to be a well-informed voice for the people we serve and the profession.

These are definitely challenging times for nurses and other members of the interdisciplinary team as cardiovascular disease is at the top of the list as a global health threat and burden. Through affiliations with over 30 other professional organizations and PCNA’s alliances with international associations such as the European Society of Cardiology and the World Heart Federation, we are extending our reach and nursing’s voice on a national and international level. Associations can do little in silos, therefore PCNA’s visibility and participation on a global level extends your compassion and support to patients and other nurses who care for patients under severely compromised conditions. PCNA leaders have forged relationships with over 20 other nursing leaders from other countries during the second Global Cardiovascular Nursing Leadership Forum (GCNLF) in Barcelona in October 2016. These relationships further extend the mission of PCNA to “promote nurses as leaders in cardiovascular disease prevention and management across the lifespan.”By mobilizing an international group of nurse leaders, experiences and challenges were shared, education on empowerment was delivered and action plans were developed focusing on relevant nursing needs for the individual participating countries.

In tandem with the CEO, Sue Koob and a committed and diligent staff, the Board of Directors provide strategic vision and operational leadership to all aspects of cardiovascular care to ensure that nurses in all settings are equipped with the knowledge, skills and tools they need to deliver care that makes a positive impact on patient outcomes. Together with you, the volunteers we continue to collaborate with industry to develop and produce a wide array of high quality and effective tools to assure success in your educational journey, the education of the interdisciplinary team, patients, families and community members. I encourage you to join PCNA and play an active role in developing even more innovative educational tools, webinars, and educational programs—share your gifts, it is empowering! Attend one of our premier annual symposiums and learn the latest about cardiovascular disease prevention. Participants’ testimonials identify these events as rewarding, empowering, recharging their professional batteries and a great opportunity to network! If you are not a member, I invite you to help us build on achievements and play an active role at the local, national and international level. We have seen great power in numbers. Evidence of this is the work of our Advocacy group. PCNA members sent nearly 1000 messages to decision-makers in 2016 joining other organizations advocating for full practice authority for APRN’s at the Veterans Health Administration and allowing NPs and CNSs to supervise cardiac rehabilitation programs. Through membership and participation in PCNA you can engage and promote your own intellectual and mental health and amplify nursing’s voice as a member of PCNA!