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Magnet Conference 2019: What’s New This Year & Can’t-Miss Events

The annual Magnet Conference, hosted by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), kicks off Thursday, October 10, in sunny Orlando, Florida. It’s the largest gathering of nurses in the U.S. (and possibly worldwide!), with more than 10,000 expected this year.

To help attendees feeling a tad overwhelmed by all the conference has to offer, Florence Health asked Rebecca Graystone, MS, MBA, RN, NE-BC, vice president of the Magnet Recognition Program® & Pathway to Excellence®, about this year’s highlights.

For those of you who won’t be there, we’re also sharing some ways for you to get take advantage, so stay tuned.

General events — what stands out?

This year’s keynote speakers range from inspirational to humanitarian to humorist. Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project, will share advice to master creativity and productivity (10/10, 9 a.m.); Leon Logothetis will recall how he traveled the world relying only on the kindness of strangers (10/12, 12:15 p.m.); and Charles Kunkle, MSN, CEN, CCRN, BC-NA, will provide concrete tips for empowering bedside caregivers (10/11, 3:30 p.m.).

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Graystone also praises the welcome party, one of the most elaborate the ANCC has ever thrown. All of Universal’s Islands of Adventure have been reserved for the event, on Thursday, October 10, from 7:30 to 11:30 p.m.

Earlier on Thursday is another event worth your consideration: the Awards and Magnet Celebration at 4:30 p.m. This year, 128 facilities will receive their designation or re-designation, more than in any previous year, Graystone says.

Last, don’t forget 2019’s philanthropic cause. For every MagnetCon, the ANCC chooses a local charity to honor with donations. This year’s is Shepherd’s Hope, a central Florida-based organization providing healthcare to the uninsured. Attendees can also give to the #EndNurseAbuse campaign, started by the ANCC-affiliated American Nurses Foundation, which seeks to end workplace violence for nurses.

The text-to-give program is open to the public until Oct. 31. To participate, text NURSE to 20222 to donate $10, THANKS to donate $25 and MAGNET to donate $50. The two charities will split the funds evenly.

Navigating the concurrent sessions

Graystone was hesitant to label any of the 70-plus sessions as “most exciting,” but she did rave about ANCC’s new approach to planning courses this year. Keep an eye out for “paired” sessions — they have multiple presenters from different organizations, adding an extra layer of perspective to the lesson.

If you’re attending the conference with other nurses from your facility, you may also plan to attend different sessions from each other in order to maximize the learning your team brings back.

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Another tip from Graystone: a main goal of the conference is to help nurses feel refreshed and excited about the work they do every day. So, pick sessions that will instill these sentiments!

What if you’re not attending?

First off, Florence Health will be attending so you can follow along on Twitter. You can also track what other people are posting via the hashtag #MagnetCon.

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If social media isn’t your thing, then Graystone recommends getting involved in your local nursing community to soak up insights from people who did attend. Reach out to fellow nurses at a local Magnet hospital, as these facilities usually send several people. Join your local affiliate of the American Nurses Association or another professional organization. And many journals will also include research from the conference, so look for articles from Magnet facilities.

Do you have any specific events at MagnetCon you’d like Florence Health to cover? Share below or email our editor,

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