The Pulse | Thursday, September 12, 2019
5 Ways to Create a Successful SGNA Region
ODSGNA (Region 62—Old Dominion), serves members of central and eastern Virginia and was the recipient of the Outstanding Regional Society award at the 2019 SGNA Annual Course. Previously, ODSGNA has been honored with the award in 2003 and 2013, as well as the Certified Region of the Year in 2004 and 2015. ODSGNA’s President Irene Rader BSN CGRN, recently reflected on how to be a successful chapter and what has led to the continued success of ODSGNA.
1. Keep Your Mission Statement at the Forefront
To be successful, look at your region’s mission statement as a guide. ODSGNA members look to our mission statement, “Leading the next generation beyond best practices for a disease-free gut,” and keep it in the forefront of our minds. We follow through on this mission by providing educational conferences to help our members advance their professional development and to keep them up to date on the changes in the GI world. Scholarships are also available for our conferences, and we raffle off SGNA memberships at each conference.
2. Encourage Certification and Continuing Education Opportunities
Encouraging certifications for your members is a good way to keep your chapter actively engaged in their continued education — likely one of the reasons they joined the region in the first place. ODSGNA’s Past President Donna Dickinson MSN RN CGRN CFER CMSRN, is in charge of obtaining continuing credit hours (CEs) for our conferences. She not only ensures that GI-specific CEs are obtained through the American Board of Certification for Gastroenterology Nurses (ABCGN), but she also helps our members who are certified in scope reprocessing obtain CEs through the Certification Board for Sterile Processing and Distribution, Inc. (CPSBD) and Certified Endoscope Reprocessor (CER) certification.
3. Communication Is Key
Communication within your region is critical to ensuring your members are in the know. ODSGNA has a total of 167 members, which makes it challenging to communicate with each member. However, advances in technology have improved this communication over the past few years. ODSGNA has an active website kept up to date by our web master. We have a dedicated communication chair, Eileen Babb, BSN RN CGRN CFER, and our membership chair, Lisa Brown, ACNA AGTS CFER CER, reaches out to members frequently via email. We also have a Facebook page where upcoming events and information is posted.
4. Know Your Audience and Make Adjustments
Knowing your audience and being open to change allows for long-term, continued improvements in the region. For 20 years we were involved in a tri-region conference with the Chesapeake and Delaware regions. The past few years, however, we noticed a decline in registration and contributed it to the distance our members had to travel and the time they had to be away from their families. This year we put a hold on that conference and ODSGNA instead held Beyond the Basics — a one-day conference with members and speakers in three different locations. It was a great success and resulted in many positive comments from our members.
5. Cultivate a Dynamic Board of Directors
ODSGNA continues to be a dynamic region due to its dedicated board members. Having board members who are not only active regionally, but also serve on national committees in SGNA and other groups like ABCGN, has been a significant factor to our success.
6. Create Meaningful Partnerships
We also collaborate, participate and donate to GI causes. By doing this we are well-respected in our region by physicians and GI organizations. We also have a strong relationship with Virginia Gastroenterological Society and we co-direct the annual ACG/VGS/ODSGNA Regional Post Graduate Course in Williamsburg, VA.
While all SGNA regions are different, they can all have an opportunity to succeed. A region’s success isn’t something that will happen overnight, but it can happen by starting off small and adapting to changes both in the field and with your members. With dedicated leadership and a mission that drives its members, your region will be on its way to success.
SGNA is a community of nurses, technicians, medical assistants, industry representatives and other GI professionals. Members join to stay up-to-date on industry trends and evidence-based practice, receive free and discounted education, network with others passionate about gastroenterology and to feel pride in their profession. Join SGNA today!