rsz madona plueger


Goodyear, AZ


Master of Science in Nursing-University of South Alabama-Mobile Alabama-May 2009
Bachelors of Arts in Nursing-Augustana College-Sioux Falls SD-2001
Associates Degree in Nursing-University of South Dakota-Vermillion SD May 1990

  • Licensure, State of Arizona RN-active since 2003
  • Licensure State of Arizona-Advance Practice RN-active since 2010
  • Certified Neuroscience Registered Nurse (CNRN) 2004-present
  • Adult Health Clinical Nurse Specialist-ANCC-2010-present


St. Joseph’s Hospital Employee of the Month 2007, 2011
Margaret Sherwood Nurse of the Year Candidate 2009, 2011, 2014
March of Dimes Finalist-Nurse of the Year-Education/Mentoring 2009
March of Dimes Candidate-Nurse of the Year-Advanced Practice-2013
American Epilepsy Society Nursing Award-Poster Presentation 2010

Vision for Neuroscience Nursing:

MISSION AANN connects, educates, and inspires nurses as leaders who influence comprehensive neuroscience health.
VISION AANN is indispensable to nurses and neuroscience healthcare.

The vision for Neuroscience Nursing becomes clearer for me as the years pass by. It is about how we see ourselves as neuroscience nurses and how our patients, families and colleagues that we interact with every day, see us. The lens of what we look through involves intense views that cover the care and management of the patient and family through the best and worst case scenarios of their life. These patients and families are vulnerable and uncertain of the path that they are on. The lens that patients and families see through, should be one of feeling safe and secure under the care of the Neuroscience nurse, as a member of a well-defined care team. It is truly about the presence of caring and competency, meshed into one. Neuroscience nurses follow standards of care with skill sets that are able to encompass the entire patient experience The members of the care teams vision needs to mirror the perspective of the neuroscience nurse and patient and family experience.

Vision for the Association:

The word indispensable is used in the current vision of American Association of Neuroscience Nurses (AANN). A clear vision statement of an organization captures a clean and concise message to those seeking definition of what the organization is and what it could be for them. The definition of indispensable according to the Oxford dictionary, is absolutely necessary. The vision of AANN is that we encompass a multitude of components that are absolutely necessary to care for and address neuroscience health. The established core values and core competencies of AANN create a structured approach for current discussions, as well as reference for the future. The ongoing connections that are being created between partner organizations, industry and care partners across the continuum remains a strength of AANN and sets a clear course of navigation for the healthcare landscape. Educational resources are abundant and being enhanced daily. Efforts are in place to reach out to generational needs of members. There are tremendous Leadership opportunities to grow and inspire and influence changes that address comprehensive and complex patient care. AANN encompasses the vision of Neuroscience nurses and is set to focus on areas of standards of practice that the neuroscience nurse experiences. It is absolutely necessary that all neuroscience nurses know of our organization and what it has to offer. AANN is the go to organization for Neuroscience Nursing care and practice.

Accomplishments in Professional Positions:

I would like to capture some of the accomplishments in Professional Positions. I currently hold a position as a Neuroscience Adult Health Clinical Nurse Specialist(CNS) in a large Neuroscience Institute.  I have the opportunity to experience the world of Neuroscience nursing from the environment of the corporate, as well as facility view, the patient and family perspective, and the view of the clinician. I am able to practice to the potential of my certification and degree, and often reference the Institute of Medicine report. This past year has brought tremendous growth and insight. There has been an opportunity to chair a corporate task force on pain management policies that surround over sedation monitoring. I have been involved in a collaborative effort addressing provider order sets, and participated in the development and implementation of order sets for the Neuroscience population; post-operative specifically. I have participated in collaboration with care coordination and providers on challenging Neuroscience patient populations. Together, we have orchestrated care in the hospital setting that eventually was able to be replicated outside of the hospital setting. We have placed patients in care settings, with the support they need. Often, these patients do not have a payor source. Creativity with caregiver participation and outside involvement of resources, have resulted in successful outcomes.  I remain involved in the roll out and implementation of our Workplace Violence Program; continuing to address the intricate needs of our Neuroscience Patent population; which includes but is not limited to ongoing definition of what defines an individual’s origin of behavior. Exploration of cost saving initiatives remain a high priority of focus and success. Our Neuroscience patient population with auto immune disorders continue to require administration of targeted biotherapy agents; of which I administer in acute care.  Over the last year, coordination with outpatient clinics and arrangement of medication on day of discharge, has resulted in significant cost savings for the institution. I am involved, and have an active voice in fall prevention, VTE prevention, Hospital Acquired Pressure Injury Prevention, CLABSI and CAUTI prevention measures.  This past year, our neuroscience patient population has seen a decrease in numbers of Venous Thromboembolism cases; and are within the required metrics for our corporate data base.  Identification of criteria of which perioperative cases were included in the data; resulted in meeting of this core measure for 6 months straight; and is ongoing.  I was part of an initiative to bring in a female external catheter to be used in the Neuroscience Intensive Care unit and am currently involved in addressing the downward trend of Catheter Associated Urinary Catheter infections.  Policy review and revision is a frequent part of my professional practice as well. I am successful in staying within the field of the Neuroscience’s, along with enveloping facility needs. I have been asked to participate in the planning and implementation of a structured approach to preparation for The Joint Commission certification specific visits; asking as consultant and collaborator of need for immediate and sustained interventions.

Accomplishments in Leadership Positions:

I completed the accomplishment in leadership position of Past President of the American Board of Trustees; concluding my tenure at the Boston meeting; March 2017. I am honored to say that I was part of ABNN since 2011-2012. During my tenure with the board I have also held the Treasurer, President elect and President positions. Our board has accomplished an addition of another certification; SCRN. I was the appointed liaison to the original Test Development Committee and applaud the work that has been accomplished surrounding this venture.

I was part of the Tri Board formed Mentorship Task force. This taskforce has involved members of all three boards with a united goal to create a mentorship plan with a toolkit and educational offerings. A pilot tool was created and initial mentors and mentees were matched.

I continue my tenure as an American Journal of Neuroscience Nursing board member. I have recently had the opportunity to take on the role of associate editor with one of our Journal articles. I look forward to exploring creative ways to reach our Neuroscience Nurses through the journal; anticipating the release and publication of our first infographics article in the near future.

I was honored to be appointed to be the American Association of Neuroscience Nurses representative; being part of a five-year commitment between the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Epilepsy Foundation, and other professional organizations, to address education and awareness through a collaborative partner Improvement project. Our mission involves addressing the needs for improving programs, services and outcomes for all that encounter individuals with seizure disorders and Epilepsy.  

I remain active with the American Epilepsy Society and accepted the position as Co-chairperson for the Interprofessional Care Symposium at the annual meeting. This three-year commitment focuses on assuring that the neuroscience clinician involved in the care of person’s with epilepsy remains present.

I also have had the opportunity to participate as a Nurse Planner in collaboration with the AES Education and Professional Development committee to assist in provision of Nursing CE credits for a “Ask the Experts” series on the topic of Teratogenicity Prevention. It is our hope that this webinar series and educational format will eventually be able to be offered through collaboration with the American Association of Neuroscience Nurses.

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