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  1. Section Editor(s): Salmond, Susan W. EdD, RN, ANEF, FAAN
  2. Guest Editor

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Reflecting back on this year's annual nurses' day, I would like to thank orthopaedic nurses everywhere for their wisdom, their compassion, and their contribution to healing. I also want to urge us all, to take the theme of nurses' week-"inspire, innovate, influence"-and make it a reality for you and for the people around you.

Susan W. Salmond, Ed... - Click to enlarge in new window Guest Editor

First, a reflection on inspiration-inspiration is a powerful force that awakens one to new possibilities and propels the individual from apathy to possibility. It energizes and reminds us of our own capabilities to excel, to engage, and to create or innovate (Kaufman, 2011). When you are inspired, you have a "can-do attitude." When you are inspired, you engage and commit; things happen that might not have without the inspiration. When you are inspired, you create an energy field that is contagious and the inspiration spreads. When you are inspired, you are open to new ideas and perspectives. Not surprisingly, inspiration is often evoked by reading, networking, being part of a team that participates in decision making, and attending seminars-all of which give an opportunity to see new perspectives to ongoing problems or challenges (Buheji, Saif, & Jahrami, 2014).


Think about what or who has inspired you in your nursing career and what was the impact? Although in my career there have been many forces that have inspired me, one dominant force has clearly been NAON. Thirty-seven years later, I still vividly recall my reaction to the first annual NAON Congress in 1981 in Dallas, TX ... it was awe, excitement, and motivation; in other words, it inspired me. The professionalism, the access to wisdom, and the ideas, all opened up my mind to not only what I could personally achieve but also what I could bring back to my team and together we could achieve for the clients we served. Over the years, so many people tied to NAON have continued to inspire me-people committed to making NAON a stellar resource for its members, people who have shared their wisdom, ideas, and knowledge, and people who cared and were willing to help toward a common goal. This inspiration was and remains a powerful force and motivator in my own career. It provides a force that keeps me open, helps bring ideas to fruition, and inspires me to think differently and creatively.


Not surprisingly, inspiration and innovation are linked. For some, the convergence of inspiration and innovation is the insight you experience in an "aha" moment. Others see inspiration as contributing insight that allows for "disruptive innovation" (Catmull & Wallace, 2014). What is clear, however, is that within healthcare today, there is an unprecedented challenge to improve quality, reduce harm, improve access, increase efficiency, eliminate waste, and lower costs (Herzlinger, 2006). We can't keep doing things as usual. Working harder will not be enough. Innovation is needed to produce exponential change as we transition to a healthcare system with greater emphasis on wellness and prevention, provide more personalized care, specifically targeting an individual's genetic profile as well as his or her individual needs, use proactive technology-enabled monitoring to keep people in their home, and practice within more integrated and comprehensive delivery organization designs. To step into innovation, you must keep up with new ideas and read the research as to what interventions or models are being tested and the impact it is having. Question how you can change your own systems of care to move toward innovation. As with inspiration, NAON and its wealth of educational resources can be a launching pad for your innovation.


The final "I"-Influence-is the power to significantly impact someone or something. As nurses, we are often unaware of the scope of influence we have. Nurses influence in many ways. Through our caring and teaching, we influence patients, families, and colleagues on a daily basis. When we mentor and coach others to encourage, develop, and demonstrate the power of nursing, we influence. When we advocate for evidence-based practice and participate in changes that will positively impact healthcare and healthcare delivery systems, we influence. There are 3.1 million RNs influencing day in and day out. Think about the magnitude of this influence! We are at a critical time in healthcare where transformation is needed. The changes needed call for nurses to influence and improve transitional care and care coordination, interprofessional collaboration, and patient and family engagement. These activities are at the core of what nurses do, and it is our opportunity to take the lead so that we, as individuals and as a profession, truly tip the scales in advancing the triple aim-to improve the patient experience, improve the health of populations, and reduce the per capita cost of healthcare. I am a believer that one person can make a difference. I am an even greater believer that with partners we can make a real difference. Partner with NAON and your colleagues in NAON to identify the need for change specific to orthopaedic nursing-learn more, question more, propose change, and test that change. As you do that, you will definitely become inspired and in doing so inspire others. You will innovate and challenge and test the status quo and further inspire others with the action. And you will influence and contribute to optimizing the care experience and care outcomes.




Buheji M., Saif Z., Jahrami H. (2014). Why inspiration matters? Journal of Inspiration Economy, 1(1), 11-20. [Context Link]


Catmull E., Wallace A. (2014). Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the unseen forces that stand in the way of true inspiration. New York: Random House. [Context Link]


Herzlinger R. E. (2006). Why innovation in health care is so hard. Harvard Business Review, 84(5), 58-66, 156. [Context Link]


Kaufman S. B. (2011). Why inspiration matters. Harvard Business Review. November 8, 2011. Retrieved from https://hbr.org/2011/11/why-inspiration-matters[Context Link]