U.S. Department of Defense


Date of this Version



Journal of Pediatric Nursing 38 (2018) 142–144


© 2017 Elsevier Inc.

This document is a U.S. government work and is not subject to copyright in the United States.



Nursing competencies establish the professional expectations for the role of the nurse and prescribe a template for developing the knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary for practice (Harding, 2016, p. 43). The Pediatric Nursing Scope and Standards of Practice, ANA et al. (2015) defines core competencies as key indicators of competent practice for pediatric registered nurses and advanced practice registered nurses (p. 8). Rationale for the need to develop professional core competencies for pediatric nursing can be found in the SPN mission statement, “to advance the specialty of pediatric nursing through excellence in education, research, and practice” http://www.pedsnurses.org/page/about-spn. Harding (2016, p. 44) emphasized that specialty nursing organizations that include education within their mission statement are committed to ensuring a prototype that specifies the concepts and context essential for critical thinking, decision-making and implementation of clinical skills for competent practice of the specialty. Both the SPN mission and vision (to be the premier resource for nurses caring for children and their families http://www.pedsnurses.org/page/spn-core-values.) statements direct the organization to establish pediatric nursing core competencies.