We recently sat down with two LNCs who joined us earlier this year at the Annual Forum 2019 to hear about their experience and to gather their advice for other LNCs who are considering attending the Annual Forum. Read their experiences and mark your calendar for the Annual Forum 2020, taking place in Denver, Colorado, from April 23-25, 2020.
AALNC: How did you hear about the Annual Forum? Why did you decide to attend?
Sarah Redmond, BSN, RN, LNC (SR): When I first became interested in legal nurse consulting, I went to the AALNC webpage for more information because I did not know of any nurses that were in the legal aspect. I started taking the LNC Professional Course to gain more knowledge about what legal nurses actually do. In all honesty, I was a tiny bit terrified when I considered going to the Annual Forum without knowing anyone there and only a little knowledge about the profession. I ultimately decided I needed to go if I was serious about pursuing this. I knew how important it was to be able to meet LNCs that were experienced and could help guide me in the right direction.
Kelli Pal, BSN, RN (KP): After hearing about the LNC career path, I researched and found the AALNC website online. It was after listening to several free webinars that I reached out via email to Mary Flanagan, previous Director-at-Large, with many questions. Mary phoned me directly and spent almost an hour speaking with me and answering all my questions. She highly encouraged that I attend the Annual Forum in Kentucky, and that I look into the LNC Professional Course offered on the AALNC website.
AALNC: Please describe your experience at the AALNC Annual Forum 2019.
SR: I had such an amazing experience! I was welcomed immediately by everyone I met and they were actually excited that I was attending. There were many different presentations and I was given a wealth of knowledge about different aspects of health law. I met so many inspirational nurses who have been working in legal nursing and were willing and eager to share their experiences and advice. The experience I had was invaluable and I am truly appreciative of the opportunity.
KP: I started the Forum with the pre-conference session LNC Boot Camp. The program was thoughtful in its design and assisted in helping to lay a solid foundation for newer LNCs. The remaining two days of the Forum were filled with a variety of interesting LNC topics, informative speakers, and an overall energizing atmosphere.
AALNC: What was your favorite part of the AALNC Annual Forum 2019?
SR: My favorite part was networking with so many nurses in different areas of legal nursing from all over the country.
KP: I felt a palpable synergy among the planning committee, BODs, and program leaders, but also with a majority of the Annual Forum attendees. Networking opportunities were endless, and I know that many I met felt the same way. I definitely made several friends during the Forum and encountered several experienced LNCs who were kind enough to offer future assistance.
AALNC: What was the biggest takeaway you received at this year’s Annual Forum?
SR: The biggest takeaway I received was, “I can do this!” I was so inspired, empowered, and motivated throughout my experience and now believe this can be my reality also. I was given tools to help me build a solid foundation and gained confidence in my ability.
KP: That AALNC is an amazing professional organization and should be viewed, as stated best by Beth Murray, as home to all LNCs. I am happy to have joined when I did, and look forward to future educational and networking opportunities.
AALNC: Why would you recommend that other LNCs attend the Annual Forum?
SR: I would definitely recommend any nurses that are considering legal nurse consulting attend the Annual Forum so they can gain more knowledge and network with other professionals. The information and encouragement that I received has been essential in helping me advance as an LNC.
KP: As nurses in a clinical setting, we knowledge-share with other medical professionals on a daily, if not hourly basis, for our patients. As an LNC, attending the Annual Forum gives us all a chance to knowledge-share with other LNCs, and learn best practices for our attorney clients, etc.
AALNC: Do you plan to attend the Annual Forum 2020?
SR: Absolutely! I can’t wait for Denver next year!
KP: Yes, I am looking forward to attending the Annual Forum 2020 in Denver.
About the Interviewees
Sarah Redmond, BSN, RN, LNC
Sarah started working in hospitals at the age of 17 and has been an RN for over 10-years. She was a travel nurse for two-years, which was advantageous for her to experience a multitude of policies and procedures at various facilities. She has worked in many different departments including the Progressive Care Unit, Telemetry, ER, Observation Unit, and Outpatient Surgery. Her greatest passion and expertise is in cardiac care, especially educating on the complexity of congestive heart failure. She is currently in the early stages of starting her own business as an independent LNC.
Kelli Pal, BSN RN
Owner, Big Horn Legal Nurse Consulting, LLC
Kelli comes to the Legal Nurse Consulting field with nine years of perioperative nursing experience, graduating with honors from the University of Colorado School of Nursing. She also has previously owned a successful small business. With multiple years in a charge nurse role in a busy hospital setting, a recent move to Wyoming has her using her clinical skills at an Ambulatory Surgery Center. Kelli has always maintained a strong interest in quality and risk management, along with a focus on current evidence-based practices. Kelli’s thorough and thoughtful form of communication has been widely appreciated by many surgeons, patients, and fellow colleagues.
Kelli is married to Dr. Jeffrey Pal, Anesthesiologist, and a proud mother to two beautiful adult daughters, both fellow alums from the University of Colorado. She and her husband enjoy the great outdoors of Wyoming, as well as traveling to visit their growing families in Colorado and Texas.