It Takes a Village: Diverse Roles and Perspectives
of NCS Nurses
By Dea Mahanes, MSN, RN, CCNS, FNCS, and Briana Witherspoon, DNP, ACNP-BC
The theme of this year’s
annual meeting in
Hawaii — “It Takes a
Village” — reflects both
the rich diversity of NCS
membership and the
need for all disciplines
and professions to work
together to improve
care. The NCS spirit
of collaboration and
emphasis on inclusivity
provides the opportunity for nurse members to make significant
contributions to the society and to neurocritical care.
The composition of the NCS nursing membership reflects the
overall diversity of the organization. Nurse members of NCS
currently total 319, including 119 individuals who joined in
2017. Based on information from last year’s Nursing Needs
Assessment, along with available membership statistics, staff
nurses and nurse practitioners each make up about a third of
the overall nursing membership. The remaining nurse members
include clinical nurse specialists, clinical educators, managers,
researchers, nursing faculty members, industry specialists, and
others. While each role offers unique contributions to the
care of neurocritical patients and to NCS, nursing serves as the
common core element of our practice.
NCS nurses also reflect the geographic diversity of the
organization. Within the United States, NCS has nurse members
from 41 states and the District of Columbia. California has the
most nurse members at 51, with Pennsylvania and Ohio coming
in second at 18 members each. In addition, NCS has several
international nurse members.
The Nursing Committee (members are listed at right) is
charged with representing the nursing voice within NCS. The
committee consists of staff nurses, clinical nurse specialists, nurse
practitioners, educators, program managers, and researchers from
ten different states and the Philippines. This year, the committee
has focused on the development of two nursing-focused online
educational products that utilize a self-paced case study format.
Once completed, these modules will be added to N-Case,
the section of NCS OnDemand devoted to nursing resources.
N-Case is accessible from the NCS website and includes several
other educational presentations, most of which are available to
members at no cost. This year, the Nursing Committee has also
continued to focus on retaining and recruiting nurse members
using information obtained from the nursing Needs Assessment.
Nurse representation is reflected on the NCS Board of Directors.
Mary Kay Bader, MSN, RN, CCNS, FNCS, FAHA, a neurocritical
care clinical nurse specialist from Mission Hospital in Mission
Viejo, California, is currently serving on the Executive Committee
as Secretary of the Society and is in line to become the first nurse
president in 2019. “Nurses are represented on the Board of
Directors and are active in numerous NCS committees, insuring
that the art and science of nursing contributes and is incorporated
in NCS throughout the organization,” said Bader.
It takes a village for the nursing profession to make optimal
contributions to neurocritical care and to NCS. We value the
diversity of our nursing members and encourage nurses in various
roles with all levels of experience to get involved. All NCS nurses
are encouraged to join the Nursing Committee conference calls.
Information for these calls and other important announcements
can be found on the Nurse Forum section of the NCS website,
which all nurse members can access. Changes intended to
increase participation and communication are anticipated in the
coming months, so stay tuned.
If you have questions about NCS nursing or would like to
learn more about opportunities to contribute, please contact
Briana Witherspoon, incoming Nursing Committee chair, at
firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are reading this from the
Annual Meeting in Hawaii, please attend the Nursing Corner from
5:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, October 11, in Kohala 3. This
session is a great opportunity to connect with fellow NCS nurse
members, so we hope to see you there! It takes a village, and we
hope you will consider joining the movement to get involved.
NCS Nursing Committee Members
**Dea Mahanes, MSN, RN,
CCNS, FNCS; Clinical Nurse
Specialist, Charlottesville, VA.
Briana Witherspoon, DNP,
ACNP-BC; Nurse Practitioner,
Nashville, TN. (Co-Chair).
**Mary Amatangelo, MS, RN,
ACNP-BC, CCRN, CNRN;
Nurse Practitioner, Boston, MA.
Debora Argetsinger, MS,
AGACNP-BC, CCRN; Nurse
Practitioner, Wyoming, MI.
Cindy Bautista, PhD, APRN,
FNCS; Associate Professor,
BSN, RN, CCRN, CNRN;
Staff Nurse, Neuroscience
Champion, Stanford, CA.
Mary Guanci, MSN, RN,
CNRN; Clinical Nurse
Specialist, Boston, MA.
Lori Madden, PhD, RN,
ACNP-BC, CCRN, CNRN;
Clinical Nurse Scientist,
Karen March, MN, RN,
Diana Jean “Yana” Serondo, RN,
NVRN-BC; Section Manager-
Stroke Service/Stroke Program
Coordinator, Taguig City,
Michelle VanDemark, ANP-BC,
FNCS; Nurse Practitioner, Sioux
Christina Watford, BSN, RN,
CCRN; Clinical Nurse Educator,
Susan Yeager, MS, RN, CCRN,
ACNP, FNCS; Nurse Practitioner,
Columbus, OH. (Board liaison,
New Committee Members,
effective October 2017
Rachel Malloy, MSN, RN, CNRN,
SCRN, ANVP; Clinical Specialist,
Merritt Island, FL.
Catrice Nakamura, MSN,
CCRN-K; Stroke Program
Manager, Torrance, CA.
**Term ends October 2017