One of the biggest challenges that clinical nurse educators at the unit level face today is measuring the ongoing competency of nursing staff members to ensure provision of high-quality, evidence-based care. Pediatric nursing leaders at an urban, level I trauma teaching institution in the southwestern United States used a shared governance approach to create a standardized competency assessment tool for pediatric intensive care unit nurses. Donna Wright’s competency assessment model was used as a framework to guide the tool’s development. The adoption of the standardized competency assessment tool was aligned with the organization’s institutional goals and enabled clinical nurse educators to comprehensively evaluate staff members on a regular basis. This standardized competency assessment system for pediatric intensive care nurses is more effective than use of a practice-based, task-oriented assessment method and has improved nursing leaders’ ability to staff the pediatric intensive care unit safely.

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