Date of Conferral



Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)




Diane K. Whitehead


As a prevalent component of the health care workforce, clinical nurse leaders play a vital role in reducing costs and promoting quality patient outcomes. The purpose of his project was to assess clinical leadership skill of nurses at a 160-bed rehabilitation hospital in a metropolitan city in the southeast United States. Guided by the Academy of Medical-Surgical Nurses model (AMSN), the practice-focused question explored the extent to which nurses perceived that they held clinical leadership knowledge and leadership competencies which impact positively on the nurse workforce and patient care. Thirty clinical registered nurses (RN) participated. According to the clinical leadership knowledge survey, 50% or more of nurses believed that they were knowledgeable in identified components of clinical leadership. Perceptions of their leadership competency skills ranged from 3-6% of participants who indicated that they were not at all competent to 33-57% of participants who indicated that they felt very competent; 76% of the respondents reported feeling positive about their emotional intelligence, a key component of clinical leadership. Recommendations to nursing leadership included workshops for clinical staff RNs based on the AMSN model of clinical leadership: clinical practice, environment practice, emotional intelligence, and leadership competencies with a. clinical ladder to support clinical leadership advancement for all nurses. Competent clinical leaders have the opportunity to guide staff nurses in improving patient outcomes and supporting positive social change in their organizations.