How to Become a Certified Nurse Leader: CNL Certification

Nursing students should consider continuing their education to earn an MSN with a CNL Certification. Find out to become CNL certified. The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) created the Certified Nurse Leader certification a few years ago with the goal of improving patient safety and health outcomes. While also improving the quality and cost-efficiency of the American health care system.That’s a big responsibility and why this credential has become so important.

Clinical nurse leaders (CNLs) are advanced generalists who have earned either an MSN or DPN degree and passed their CNL exam.

What is a CNL?

Faced with troubling patient-outcome statistics, the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) Board of Directors formed a task force in order to identify some primary concerns related to healthcare delivery. The task force developed new educational models, including a “new nurse” graduate who would be educated beyond a 4-year baccalaureate program. It was also determined this new role was needed in order to differentiate scope of practice and create a new license.

Thus the much-needed new Clinical Nurse Leader career in nursing began, as CNLs would assume accountability for patient-care outcomes through the assimilation and application of evidence-based information to design, implement, and evaluate patient-care processes and models of care delivery. They would also act as providers and managers of care at the point of care to individuals and cohorts of patients anywhere healthcare was delivered.

  • A CNL is a nurse who has at least a Master’s degree and can practice across a wide variety of healthcare systems.
  • CNLs are advanced generalist clinicians. They use their advanced knowledge to assist other nurses in patient evaluations and risk assessment.
  • A CNL oversees all patient care within the nursing team.
  • They collaborate with the whole of the medical facility to improve patient care even further. Their expert knowledge in patient care allows them to facilitate and coordinate all aspects of patient care.
  • CNLs scope includes:Patient safety
    • Quality care
    • Risk reduction
    • Cost containment
  • CNLs are able to work in all practice settings.
  • Since healthcare is always changing, this certification ensures you can be prepared with any alterations to the health system.
  • CNL’s are leaders in care coordination, assist patients in complex situations, can conduct any medical practice within the nursing field, can offer patients the latest innovations in healthcare, and exercise decision-making authority.

When you work as a CNL in your career path, the position you’ll work will vary. But you’ll be an authority figure to the nursing team.

Why Was the CNL Created

With the demand for nursing, there had to be a license that truly proves a nurse meets all standards. The CNL was created to further establish nurses who have amazing patient care.

The medical field is constantly changing. A CNL confirms a nurse has knowledge in all present medical technology and can understand future trends in healthcare technology.

Why is a CNL So Important

Today, approximately 2,500 CNLs have been certified and are able to use the credential and title of CNL. This relatively new position to the nursing profession shows enormous promise and continues to evolve and improve conditions for patients and healthcare systems alike. For those who choose this career path, opportunities will be plentiful for the foreseeable future.

Learn more about earning your CNL degree online today. Not sure which CNL program is right for you? Take our CNL degree quiz to help you decide.

A CNL’s focus in on patients. The certification proves you have more knowledge and skills. This certification also helps you apply these skills to your position. Because of this authoritative role, you will be valued highly.

Earning a CNL is an achievement. You can prove your knowledge is broader than what a typical nursing can offer. You go beyond standards and you prove to employers you’re truly an asset to the team.

A CNL ensures you know all safety standards and can provide amazing care to patients.

Achieving your CNL opens you up to other roles in the health industry, such as becoming an educator and other advanced roles. The CNL is also a great way to increase your knowledge of health and patient care.

How to Become CNL Certified

When you enroll in a master’s program- enroll in a CNL master’s program. There are core classes you need to complete and 348 hours of role immersion.

You’ll learn how to become a nurse by studying the CNL criteria as you’re completing your education. Before you can become certified, you must have experience in your field.

You can fine CNL master’s programs online. Schools such as Sacred Heart University offer online CNL programs.

Now You Know How to Become a Nurse

Nursing is a rewarding profession, but it requires a continuing education.

CNL master’s programs are recommended for those who take their nursing career seriously.

Once you reach this level, you’ll become an influence on your nursing team and an employee that is sought-after.

If you’re interested in becoming CNL certified, check our database to find out how to qualify.