Community Health Agencies

Practice Area: Community Health Agencies2017-10-19T12:37:33-07:00


Community health agencies deal with the health conditions of entire communities, ranging from small areas to large regions.  A CNL role in hospitals often faces issues that affect multiple people, and offer advice on how to either prevent or treat existing or potential health problems.


Working in this type of health agency is an excellent way for a CNL to combine professional expertise and love for the community. A Clinical Nurse Leader will have an opportunity to work closely together with other members of the nursing staff and educate them on how to effectively deal with common health issues. Some of the specific responsibilities that a CNL in this area may have are:

  • Provide high-quality healthcare, evaluate patient outcomes and act as a leader in the process of care improvement.

  • Conduct a health risk assessment for diverse populations in a given community.

  • Develop community partnerships to create health promotion goals and implement strategies to fulfill them.


The salary for a Clinical Nurse Leader in the community health agency varies from $50,000 to $90,000 depending on the type of community and its location. The average stands at about $70,000. (Note: Salary data collected as of 2016.)


To effectively face the pressures of dealing with health issues on a community-wide level, a CNL should have an accredited MSN degree and a CNL Certification. Additional requirements may vary depending on the agency.


There are several different types of community health agencies, including nonprofits, government agencies and faith-based organizations. Many of these agencies run health centers and clinics in disadvantaged communities that have little or no other access to basic health services.

Shift lengths can vary depending on specialization, hours of operation, and whether the position is full-time or part-time.


While patients are encouraged to make appointments ahead of time, most community health centers and clinics will also treat patients requiring immediate medical attention. Given the wide range of treatments and preventive care that might be offered in the course of a single day, CNLs will need to retain a wide body of generalized knowledge. This will help guide the process of implementing efficiencies across the office that will benefit the overall health of the community.


Like urgent care facilities, community health centers and clinics tend to be relatively small operations, and they can be a great place to learn. As is the case with any small office environment, employees often develop skill sets outside of their initial job description.

Due to the fact that most community centers do not operate 24/7, many clinicians work part-time. This can be an asset for anyone looking for supplemental income or a flexible work schedule.

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Practice Areas

While a Clinical Nurse Leader can work in various settings, different roles mean different responsibilities. The most common practice areas where a CNL can be found are highlighted below. To learn more by clicking on each icon.

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What education level is required to be a CNL?

You will need at least a MSN with a concentration in Clinical Nurse Leadership or a similar program. This is because a CNL needs to be a resource for their nursing team, and the MSN assures that a nurse is clinically competent to do that.  There are also Post-Master’s Certificate programs that will prepare any nurse already carrying an MSN degree for the CNL exam.

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CNL Role in Hospitals: Community Health Agencies
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CNL Role in Hospitals: Community Health Agencies
What out what a CNL Role in Hospitals is? Community health agencies deal with the health condition of entire communities.
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