Meet BCEN 2022 National Certification Champion: Centura Health

On September 13, BCEN was pleased to announce our 2022 National Certification Champion Award – Healthcare System category winner:    


Centura Health

Centennial, CO

What does being named a BCEN National Certification Champion mean to your organization and the communities you serve?

Winning the BCEN National Certification Champion Award is such an honor. It recognizes the willingness of Centura Health to make changes and intentional actions to support our incredible nurses and defines our ability to provide our nurses with a professional path to further support their career. National certification is a validation of one’s expertise in the field in which they practice, and this certification is a true testament to the incredible whole-person care that our nurses provide to our patients every single day. At Centura, we value being a trusted resource for our flourishing communities and vibrant neighborhoods and this certification further cements that trust.

What sets nurses who have earned the CEN, CPEN, TCRN, CTRN, and/or CFRN apart in their daily practice and in their professional development trajectories?

The nurses that take the extra step show that while many are knowledgeable and experienced, this certification provides challenging clinical cases where one can show expertise in all elements of whole person care from initial encounter through research opportunities. Nurses who pursue these certifications are truly dedicated to providing exceptional patient care and performing at the top of their license. In addition to meaningful experience, this is yet another metric that helps demonstrate an expansive national knowledge base and validates excellence in nursing and whole-person care.

What are the positive outcomes you are seeing and tracking as the number of BCEN-certified nurses increases?

BCEN-certified nurses have participated in national, regional and local levels in multiple ways beyond patient care. At Centura, the input and ingenuity of our nurses is paramount to the exceptional care we provide to our patients and community.  Certified nurses lecture, advocate on behalf of their patients, write articles for journals, educate our fellow care team members are involved in various nursing and hospital committees and groups, provide presentations for our organization and others, are involved in research and outreach, and are change agents throughout the spectrum. Certification demonstrates credibility and validated knowledge and expertise.

What do you most want other organizations to know about why and how to support nursing specialty certification?

We are passionate about creating a work environment that fully supports our nurses— an environment that encourages their professional development, allows them to live their mission and enables them to improve the lives of our communities. The money spent on supporting nurses to earn and maintain certification has a significant return on investment. Taking coursework and reviewing material to enhance success to pass the board certification is time well spent. Specialty certification is especially challenging and noteworthy in a nurse’s career. Knowing that your organization supports you in this way enables us to enhance the care we provide our patients, our performance and helps drive the desire future education and research. When nurses feel they are valued as a professional and as a team member—not just a pair of shoes filling a position—they are even more attracted to the organization.

Here’s what Centura Health nurse leaders had to say about board certification and the nurses who earn it:

“We believe that certification not only recognizes the individual, but also improves the health care ecosystem in which they work. Their advanced expertise and experience contribute to nursing excellence and improve patient outcomes.”

– Brenda Simpson, DNP, RN, CENP, Senior Vice President & Chief Nursing Officer, Centura Health

“Our certified nurses are the identified and recognized resource leaders that guide and direct care, education and research within our health care teams.

Centura Health has consistently put certification and education as top priorities and has driven that goal, and has only increased methods of recognition and support. … Every organization seeks fiscal responsibility and methods to become more efficient, and certification and education support is never considered for any decrease.”

– Kim Muramoto, MSN, RN, TCRN, Centura Health Enterprise Trauma Director

“Centura Health acknowledges that nurse certifications improve patient care and outcomes. Because of this, certification is encouraged at all Centura facilities regardless of location or Magnet designation status. I am proud to work for a hospital system that values nursing knowledge and promotes professional growth through certification.”

– Sherry Steffen, MSN, MBA, RN, CEN, TCRN, CSTR, Trauma Program manager, Centura/St. Francis Hospital

“I represent Flight For Life Colorado, the nation’s first civilian-based air medical program which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. In its early days, there were no certifications documenting the expertise and the knowledge base of its nurses. Because of the CFRN certification, we now have and external measure of the internal excellence of our flight nurses and can demonstrate that they have the requisite foundational knowledge, and the discernment, to know when to apply it.

Centura has supported the CFRN certification for our nurses for many years, as well as the CEN and CTRN certifications, all of which our nurses hold. Centura’s support has made a substantial difference to our care teams and to our patients.”

– Kathleen Mayer, MS, RN, CMTE, Program Director, Flight For Life Colorado, Centura Health

Read about all of BCEN’s 2022 National Certification Champion Award winners here.