Criterion for Evaluating Nominations

The New Hampshire Nurses Association’s Excellence in Nursing Task Force has developed the following information to facilitate the nomination process for the Excellence in Nursing Awards.  Each criteria should be evident within the nomination submitted.

For each of the fourteen awards the Task Force has identified 5 criteria.  Each criterion will be rated on a scale of 1 to 5 for total possible score of 25 per nomination.  The Task Force has also identified the nursing care areas covered under each category.  (There is some overlap in these categories.  Nominators should pick the category that best suites the nominee.)

Advanced Practice Nursing

This category recognizes an Advance Practice Registered Nurse working in any practice setting, including nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, nurse anesthetists, and nurse midwives.

  • Demonstrates contributions in clinical practice.
  • Demonstrates contributions to healthcare policy.
  • Demonstrates contributions to Advance Practice education.
  • Demonstrates contributions in leadership.
  • Demonstrates contributions within professional organizations.

Ambulatory Care Nursing

This category recognizes a nurse working in the ambulatory care setting and includes nurses in care coordination, clinic based nursing and telehealth nursing (based on AAACN defining characteristics).

  • Demonstrates critical reasoning and astute clinical judgment to expedite appropriate care and treatment.
  • Provides high quality care across the life span to individuals, families, caregivers, groups, populations, and communities.
  • During each encounter, focuses on patient safety and the quality of nursing care by applying appropriate nursing interventions (i.e. identifying, clarifying patient needs, conducting health education, promoting patient advocacy, coordinating care, assisting the patient to navigate the health care system, and evaluating patient outcomes).
  • Acts as partner, advocate, and advisor, assists and supports patients, families, and caregivers in the optimal management of their health care, respecting their culture and values, individual needs, health goals, and treatment preferences.
  • Facilitates continuity of care using the nursing process, inter-professional collaboration, and coordination of and access to appropriate health care services and community resources across the care continuum.

Cardiovascular Nursing

This category recognizes a nurse or advance practice nurse working in critical care units, progressive care units (telemetry), cardiac rehabilitation programs, cardiovascular and heart failure clinics, cardiovascular office practice, pediatric intensive care units and pediatric cardiovascular units.

  • Demonstrates knowledge, skills and continuing education in cardiovascular nursing for Best Clinical Practice.
  • Demonstrates excellence in patient/family care, communication, education and advocacy.
  • Engages in collaboration and provides care coordination.
  • Demonstrates professionalism and leadership.
  • Demonstrates community engagement.

Emergency Nursing

This category recognizes a nurse working as an emergency nurse, flight nurse or urgent care nurse.

  • Demonstrates practice excellence in emergency nursing.
  • Provides evidence of knowledge creation and dissemination.
  • Engages in community service.
  • Demonstrates professional engagement.
  • Demonstrates advocacy.

Front Line/Administrative Nurse Leader

This category recognizes a front line or administrative nursing leader and includes nursing supervisors, clinical leaders, informal/project leaders, functional leaders (leaders without direct reports, informatics, quality, etc.).

  • Supports the established vision and inspires colleagues to reach shared goals.
  • Engages, motivates and develops peers.
  • Fosters service excellence.
  • Fosters and encourages team collaboration.
  • Builds and manages relationships.

Hospice-Palliative Care and/or Gerontologic Nursing

This category recognizes a nurse working in hospice-palliative care, gerontologic care or long term care and includes nurses working in skilled nursing, rehabilitation, assisted living, intermediate care, palliative care, hospice, home care, parish nursing and dementia/memory care.

  • Demonstrates excellence in nursing practice.
  • Acknowledged as a champion of the hospice and palliative care and/or gerontologic nursing specialty area.
  • Engages in care coordination.
  • Demonstrates commitment to life-long learning.
  • Demonstrates leadership and advocacy.


Maternal-Child Health Nursing

This category recognizes a nurse working in prenatal care, high-risk maternal-fetal care, intrapartum care, postpartum care, newborn care, newborn special care and newborn intensive care.

  • Demonstrates commitment to a positive professional work environment for care of women and newborns.
  • Advocates for diversity among colleagues and social responsibility in the care of women and newborns.
  • Demonstrates integrity in exemplifying the highest standards of professional behavior in the care of women and newborns.
  • Promotes nursing excellence for quality outcomes in practice, education, research, advocacy and/or management in the care of women and newborns.
  • Generates knowledge to enhance the science and practice of nursing to improve the health of women and newborns.

Medical Surgical Nursing

This category recognizes a nurse working in acute care settings and includes nurses working on in-patient units, including medical-surgical units, intensive care units, post-operative care units, operating suites, etc.

  • Leadership: always models professional behavior, engages in conflict resolution, and actively advocates for patients, healthy work environments and the nursing profession.
  • Collaboration: is a patient-care coordinator acting in collaboration with patient, family, significant other and healthcare providers, facilitating clear communication in an ethical manner while maintaining the most effective use of resources to decrease healthcare costs to system and patients.
  • Research: uses research and/or evidence-based practice(s) to improve clinical care and identifies clinical problems for research studies; engages in and/or collaborates in the research process.
  • Practice/Growth: engages in self-evaluation to identify practice development and actively seeks learning opportunities through continuing education, formal education, certification, experiential learning and collegiality as well as recognizes the need to share knowledge and teach others on the unit, within the facility and in the community
  • Professional Engagement: promotes professional nursing through academic achievement and community outreach.

Nurse Educator

This category recognizes a nurse involved in education who works to advance the knowledge, skills and professionalism required for patient-centered care.  This includes active nursing education activities in environments such as: nursing professional development (organizational settings); nurse education (academic settings) and nurse education (clinical settings).

  • Establishes a stimulating and engaging learning environment to generate and transmit knowledge to improve nursing practice.
  • Facilitates continuous learner development/socialization for nursing students and/or practicing nurses.
  • Demonstrates leadership qualities, including but not limited to: adaptability, creativity, diplomacy, integrity and decisiveness.
  • Involves one’s self in patient or community advocacy and public service consistent with national health care priorities.
  • Contributes to the continuous quality improvement of nursing education with the generation of new knowledge or translation of current knowledge to reflect evidence-based practice.

Nurse Researcher

This category recognizes a nurse involved in research who works to advance evidence based practice defined as: “the integration of best research, clinical expertise, and patient values in making decisions about the care of individualized patients.”

  • Actively involves one’s self in evidence-based practice (EBP) activities.
  • Educates others on developing EBP awareness, knowledge or skills.
  • Demonstrates leadership qualities, including but not limited to: adaptability, creativity, diplomacy, integrity and decisiveness.
  • Establishes a stimulating and engaging learning environment to guide, mentor or coach others in utilizing EBP.
  • Involves one’s self in patient or community advocacy consistent with national health care priorities.

Pediatric & School Nursing

This category recognizes a nurse working on in-patient pediatric units, in pediatric practices, or as a school nurse.

  • Follows standards of practice set by the specialty practice areas of pediatrics and/or of school nursing.
  • Provides family centered care, addressing needs of the whole family.
  • Demonstrates leadership qualities such as professionalism, problem solving, integrity, collaboration, adaptability and engagement.
  • Engages in quality improvement initiatives and utilizes evidence-based interventions to improve the care of pediatric patients.
  • Contributes to community.

Psychiatric & Mental Health Nursing

This category recognizes a psychiatric and mental health nurse working on in-patient units or in community based care.

  • Demonstrates excellence in practice in psychiatric and mental health nursing.
  • Demonstrates excellence in leadership.
  • Demonstrates excellence in innovation.
  • Demonstrates excellence in education.
  • Demonstrates excellence in research.

Public Health Nursing

This category recognizes a nurse working in a community based setting and includes community nursing, visiting nursing, public health nursing, correctional nursing, camp nursing, and mobile nursing.

  • Works collaboratively.
  • Utilizes evidenced-based practice.
  • Demonstrates expertise in caring for target population(s).
  • Demonstrates expertise in social determinants of health (SDH).
  • Demonstrates experience in policy change.

Senior Nurse Leader

This category recognizes a senior nursing leader and includes nursing directors, vice presidents, chief nursing officers, etc.

  • Establishes common vision and goals.
  • Engages, motivates, and develops people.
  • Fosters service excellence.
  • Builds strong teams.
  • Builds and manages relationships.

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