To all Certified Addiction Nurses CARN and CARN-AP,
ANCB thanks all of those who voted on the proposed changes to the ANCB bylaws. Many changes have been enacted to both our organization and IntNSA since the bylaws were amended in 2018. These changes are reflected in the bylaws and have been enacted to satisfy the standard of autonomy required by the Accreditation Board of Specialty Nursing Certification (ABSNC).
The 30-day voting time frame, from January 22, 2022, to February 21, 2022, allowed for members to respond to proposed bylaw changes, resulting in 178 responses from certified nurses. Of these responses, 176 respondent votes could be counted towards voting, as two nurses did not respond to all proposed changes to the bylaw, specifically changes to Section 2 NOTICE OF MEETINGS and Section 3 TERMS OF OFFICE. Nonetheless, all the proposed changes were accepted with an overwhelming majority voting in the affirmative. You may find a copy of the updated ANCB bylaws attached.
Throughout the voting process, respondents were encouraged to voice their questions and comments. We thank you for utilizing this feature and we have posted our answers and responses below. The bylaws can be found here.
ANCB remains committed to our mission to support all addiction nurses. We appreciate and highly regard all you do to help those with substance use disorders. Your certification in addiction nursing demonstrates specialized knowledge, skill, and ability to implement optimal, non-stigmatizing evidence-based practices. Keep up all the great work you do and please encourage other nurses to become a CARN or CARN-AP.
Rosemary Smentkowski MSN, RN, PMHNP-BC, CARN
President, Addictions Nursing Certification Board
ANCB Bylaws: Addressing Questions and Comments
Q: I think you should add a bylaw that addresses that ANCB can also affiliate with other addiction nursing organizations besides IntNSA.
A: ANCB is actively pursuing two affiliation agreements with nursing organizations and hope to have an update in April 2022, and we are open to similar talks with IntNSA USA when they have finalized their status and incorporation.
Q: I feel that it is in the best interest of all Addiction Nurses to belong to IntNSA USA to help develop continued platform and affiliations with other organizations that also support treatment with evidenced based practice, such as the American Academy of Healthcare Providers in the Addictive Disorders, (have Nurses, NPs, Counselors, Physicians), AATOD who has all levels and fields that supports Opioid Use Disorder and all addictions. Build affiliations with those who are strong representatives in our field.
A: We have begun to reach out to national leaders in nursing and have two affiliation agreements in process. ANCB cannot require nurses who apply for certifications and recertification to belong to any specific nursing organization.
Q: Why are we still using the term "Addiction" when ASAM criteria clearly states that we should be using correct terminology as substance use disorder?
A: While ANCB is very mindful of the stigma associated with substance use disorders, addiction is the term for the disease. Our use of “addiction(s)” is intended as a neutral- clinical term, void of pejorative connotations.
Q: I endorse the distancing from IntNSA, but is there a requirement for ABNS accreditation to have a relationship with a professional organization?
A: The American Board of Nurse Specialties (ABNS) and the Accreditation Board of Specialty Nursing Certification (ABNSC) do not require a certification board to belong to a professional organization. Some organizations still have a collaborative relationship with professional organizations, but the certification board must maintain autonomous.
Q: RE: #3 - I agree that #3 should remove "internationally", but believe it should retain "nationally" or "in the United States” RE: #10 - Agree that the public member should not serve on a board with conflicting interests, so I do not believe that that statement should be "eliminated" (was this a wording error?) #20: Are you saying that certificants (CARN & CARN-AP) no longer need to be notified and be offered an opportunity to vote on bylaw changes like the ones we are voting on today? Sounds like the proposed change would remove all voting rights from CARN and CARN-APs and give all voting rights to the ANCB Board.
A: (#3) Because ANCB is certifying addiction nurses in the U.S., its territories, and Canada, we elected to eliminate the terms “internationally” and “nationally.” (#10) The vote was to eliminate the public member not serving on the board with conflicting interests. The public member may not concurrently serve on a board with conflicting interests of ANCB. (#20) ANCB will post bylaws on our website and will be implementing a process that allows certified members to submit comments regarding amendments. The ANCB board will be responsible for changing the bylaws, as the board maintains diversity reflecting the scope of certified nurse interests.
Q: Regarding 21: if adopted, is there a means for members to offer amendments to the bylaw to add, "ratified by 2/3 of the membership" after Directors then in office? Is the Annual Meeting scheduled?
A: Certificants may notify the board if they would like to add amendments to the bylaws. In addition, ANCB will post bylaws on our website and will be implementing a process that allows certified members to submit comments regarding amendments.
Q: Do not let personal differences interfere with professional decisions. I saw this last year with starting a new Addiction Organization when disagreements were had with outgoing INTNSA President. It weakens nursing as a whole. I see importance with both organizations helping each other. When I became a CARN in 1998, I was not told about INTNSA. I am now a board member of both IntNSA USA and Glibel.
A: We appreciate your comment and would like to reassure you that our decisions regarding changes to the bylaws are based upon professionalism. Our base purpose is to provide a certification program for nurses in the U.S., its territories, and Canada. Differences in nurses’ educational programs limit our ability to provide certifications in other nations.
Q: Is there a mechanism for retired RN's to maintain an active CARN certification if their RN license is still active, or if they choose to volunteer and/or work very part-time hours?
A: Unfortunately, nurses have encountered challenges in locating information on retirement status, an issue that we are working towards resolving and for which we apologize for any inconvenience. We will work to ensure retired status is a visible alternative for colleagues.