History, Mission and Vision

History of  Palm Beach County Chapter of the AACN

On September 10, 1973,  the National Office of the American Association of Critical Care Nurses, (AACN),  recognized the Palm Beach County Chapter,  as one of the pioneer chapters in the state of Florida, and granted it “Charter Status”.  A group of acute and critical care nurses driven and united through a common purpose, vision; created the foundation for a strong and resilient organization, still focused today, on supporting nurses knowledge, quality of care, and work environment.

Each year, PBC-AACN thrived on it steadfast belief in it’s mission; formation of alliances with other professional organizations, involvement with area hospitals, and recruitment of local members.

In May 1990, another cornerstone was laid, the first Certification Luncheon was celebrated. This was an honorary event to recognize Acute & Critical Care nurses in the county who achieved the “Gold Standard” in specialty care their certification. This recognition has continued; alternating a luncheon with an evening event annually.  Educational offerings for the CCRN /PCCN Review are held in order for members to prepare for their certification and advance nursing education.

In 2003 the chapter culminates its successes over the past 30 years by being the proud recipient of the illustrious “2003 President’s Award” from National AACN and again in 2012.  This award exemplifies all the effort, hard work and heartfelt dedication from its numerous valuable volunteer leaders and members in promoting the AACN’s President’s vision and theme.

The Palm Beach County Chapter continues to be an active voice for its members. Each passing year, the chapter has tackled important nursing issues and supported numerous causes that uphold the standards of our profession. The educational offerings of the chapter provide cutting edge information, education and technology.  Implementing Evidence-Based Nursing Practice has been an initiative of PBCC since 2004. In 2010 PBCC, Sigma Theta Tau XIO Chapter, Florida Atlantic University and Palm Healthcare Foundation launched two evidenced- base nursing practice workshops.  Palm Healthcare Foundation Grant awarded the top three EBNP projects winners, at the CCRN Recognition and EBNP Project Awards Dinner.

The first Certification Dinner event of the chapter in 2011 drew over a hundred participants from area acute and critical care nursing units. In May, 2012, Orlando, hosted the National Teaching Institute and Critical Care Exposition (NTI), AACN’s annual national gathering of thousands of acute and critical care nurses.  The Palm Beach County Chapter was recognized as the recipient of another 2012 AACN Circle of Excellence Award for Excellence in Promoting the Value of Certification, which recognizes our chapter’s contributions that support and foster the advancement of certified nursing practice in high acuity and critical care units.

Become involved… network…learn, and let your voice be heard as we stand “together, bolder and stronger” in order to provide safe and quality nursing care.  It is through our “Dare to” support a healthy work environments, certification and Beacon recognition we assure patient safety.

The PBCC AACN’s Mission and Vision is congruent to National AACN which is as follows:


Patients and their families rely on nurses at the most vulnerable times of their lives. Acute and critical care nurses rely on the AACN for expert knowledge and influence to fulfill their promise to patients and their families.  The AACN drives for excellence, because nothing else is acceptable.


AACN is dedicated to creating a healthcare system driven by the needs of patients and their families, where acute and critical care nurses, make their optimal contribution.


As AACN works to promote its mission and vision, it is guided by values that are rooted in, and arise from the asscociation’s history, traditions and culture.  Therefore, AACN and its members, volunteers and staff, will:

  • Be accountable to uphold and consistently act in concert with ethical values and principles
  • Be an advocate for organizational decisions that are driven by the needs of patients and families.
  • Act with integrity, by communicating openly and honestly, keeping promises, honoring commitments and promoting loyalty in relationships.
  • Collaborate with all essential stakeholders , by creating synergistic relationships, to promote common interest and shared values.
  • Provide leadership to transform thinking, structures and processes to address opportunities and challenges.
  • Demonstrate stewardship through fair and responsible management resources.
  • Embrace life long learning, inquiry and critical thinking, to enable each to make optimal contributions.
  • Commit to quality and excellence at all levels of the organization, meeting and exceeding standards and expectations.
  • Promote innovation through creativity and calculated risk taking.
  • Generate commitment and passion to the organization’s causes and work.

An Ethic of Care

AACN’s mission, vision and values, are framed within an ethic of care and ethical principles. An ethic of care, is a moral orientation, that acknowledges the interrelatedness and interdependence of individuals, systems and society.  An ethic of care, respects individual uniqueness, personal relationships, and the dynamic nature of life.  Essential to the ethic of care, are compassion, collaboration, accountability and trust.  Within the context of  interrelationships of individuals and circumstances, traditional ethical principles, provide a basis for deliberation and decision making.

These ethical principles include:

Respect for persons: a moral obligation to honor the intrinsic worth and uniqueness of each person; to respect self determination, diversity and privacy.  Beneficence: a moral obligation to promote good and prevent or remove harm; to promote welfare, health and safety of society and individuals in accordance with beliefs, values, preferences and life goals.  Justice: a moral obligation to be fair and promote equity, non-discrimination, and the distribution of benefits and burdens based on needs and resources available; to advocate on another’s behalf when necessary.

Retrieved on March 27, 2011 www.aacn.org