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HOME > J Korean Acad Community Health Nurs > Volume 5(2); 1994 > Article
Original Article A Study on the Establishment of Clinical Nurse Specialist
Young Soon Byun, Young Im Kim, Mi Sook Song

Published online: December 31, 1994
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1College of Nursing, Ewha University, Korea.
2Department of Health Sciences, Korea National Open University, Korea.
3College of Medicine, A-Ju University, Korea.

Our medical care system is trying to diversify in order to meet the client's needs, and to adjust to a medical environment which is changing very rapidly. Because current nursing theory and practice focus on holistic care, health care management, education, and research, contrary to the traditional emphasis on only assisting a physician, more autonomy and specialization for the implementation of nursing are required. Considering these trends and actual needs, the category of clinical nurse specialist should be established as soon as possible. In order to develop strategies for implementing this new professional specialty, the authors conducted a field survey and literature review of the current system in Korea. As a result, various obstacles and constraints were discovered as follows : 1) There are few accredited educational programs for the training of CNS's. 2) Several hospitals already have staff designated as clinical nurse specialist (CNS) even though the term CNS is not yet standardized or adopted in nationwide. 3) The role of the CNS is not clearly understood by the medical societies, or even nursing societies. A nurse who works in specific nursing areas such as central supply, kidney dialysis, intensive care, coronary care, etc. for a long time, considers herself/himself a CNS. Based upon the above findings, the following alternatives are recommended. 1) The role of the CNS should be defined according to specified functions and authority : professional autonomy ; counselling and educating patients and their familes, nurses, and even other medical personnel ; research on improvement of nursing ; and management of the nursing environment including medical resources, information, and cases. 2) the qualification of CNS should be attained only by a nurse who has an RN license and clinical experience of more than 3 years in a specific nursing field: passes a qualifying examination; and contributes to the professional development of peers, colleagues, and others. A master's degree should only be optional, because of the insufficient of graduate programs which are well designed for the CNS. 3) The CNS should initially be a head nurse rather than line staff in order to deal with as wide an experience base as possible. 4) The nursing specialty could be divided into two areas such as a clinical field and a community field. The clinical field could then be categorized by the Styles' classification such as diseases and pathogenics, systems, ages, acuity, skills/techniques, and function/role ; the community field could be classified according to work site.

RCPHN : Research in Community and Public Health Nursing