Jack Davis of Hospital for Special Surgery Named President of National Association of Orthopaedic Nurses
Jack Davis, RN, ONC, manager of Patient Education and Research at Hospital for Special Surgery, has been named president of the National Association of Orthopaedic Nurses (NAON). The induction ceremony took place at the organization’s annual congress in Atlanta on May 21.
“It’s truly an honor, and I am humbled and privileged to serve as NAON’s president during its 40th anniversary year,” said Davis, who has been active in the nonprofit organization for the past two decades. He will serve a one-year term as president.
NAON was established in 1980 to promote the highest standards of nursing practice through research, education and effective communication between orthopedic nurses and groups with similar interests. Davis notes that NAON’s focus on best practices, research and education aligns perfectly with the mission of Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS), where he has spent his 39-year career in nursing.
Leadership of NAON is the latest achievement for Davis, who is highly respected and recognized by colleagues as an innovative leader, thoughtful mentor and exemplary clinician who strives for excellence.
“A NAON core value that Jack’s practice most exemplifies is integrity,” said Patricia Quinlan, PhD, RN, assistant vice president of Nursing Excellence at Hospital for Special Surgery. “I have always admired Jack for his willingness to serve. A vital member of our nursing administrative team, Jack connects with nurses on every level.”
Davis began his career as a licensed practical nurse at HSS in 1980, the same year that NAON was established. “Like the founders of NAON, I too was determined to build a strong foundation in orthopedic nursing with a focus on research, education and practice. I found those values at HSS,” he remarked.
Davis realized early on that a career in nursing with greater opportunity would require higher education. So he decided to go back to school. He passed the Orthopaedic Nurse Certification examination in 1992 and went on to earn Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees in Nursing.
After becoming a registered nurse, he moved from inpatient care to the post-anesthesia care unit (PACU) at HSS, where he assessed and managed pain and other patient concerns after surgery.
He later left the PACU for a nurse coordinator position. He was responsible for staffing, emergency admissions, pharmacy and the blood bank during the evening and night shift. He notes that in this role, he learned about interdisciplinary communication and team building, and he enjoyed mentoring and coaching nursing staff.
Davis went on to work as a nurse clinician and quality manager for a total joint replacement specialist, who introduced him to the care of patients before and after surgery.
In his current role as manager of Patient Education and Research at HSS, which he assumed in 2008, Davis is responsible for the classes and online information that prepare patients for surgery. He also serves as a mentor to nursing staff, promoting their growth and development through education and research projects.
“I have known Jack for over thirty years. He has always been a champion of nursing and a wonderful role model,” said Barbara Wukovits, RN, director of Pain Management Services in the Department of Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine at HSS. “I have deep respect for his abilities and his loyalty to his colleagues. He truly is genuine and I am forever grateful to have him as a friend.”
His career at HSS has prepared him for the NAON leadership position, according to Davis. He notes that the hospital has offered him continuous opportunities for growth in a culture that embraces the pursuit of excellence. He chairs the Continuing Nursing Education Committee and the Nursing Research and Evidence-Based Practice Committee at HSS. He participates in a number of additional groups, including the Continuing Medical Education Committee, the Nursing Community Education Outreach Program and the Institutional Review Board. He is a member of the editorial board of the HSS Journal.
Davis has written or co-authored numerous articles in peer-reviewed journals and has presented his research at professional meetings and conferences throughout the United States and in Europe.
His NAON presidential theme for 2019–2020 is “Engage Your Core,” which he hopes will inspire NAON members to become more engaged on many different levels. He provided more details in his presidential message to NAON members: “Engage your core passion and drive to become a more professional orthopedic nurse; engage your core leadership values by stepping up to serve by joining a NAON committee or seeking a leadership position; engage your core team at work; engage your core nursing knowledge to enhance quality care.”
Davis reflects on the extraordinary evolution in patient care he has witnessed over his 39-year career in orthopedic nursing. “In 1980, total knee replacement was a new procedure to relieve the pain of severe arthritis. The average hospital stay was 14 days,” he recalls. “Today, some patients are able to leave the hospital the same day they have a knee replacement.”
Davis notes that the nursing profession continues to change and will face challenges along the way. “Health care reform in the musculoskeletal sector is needed and inevitable,” he says. “Who better to lead that charge than the thousands of NAON nurses?”
HSS is the world’s leading academic medical center focused on musculoskeletal health. At its core is Hospital for Special Surgery, nationally ranked No. 1 in orthopedics (for the 13th consecutive year), No. 3 in rheumatology by U.S. News & World Report (2022-2023), and the best pediatric orthopedic hospital in NY, NJ and CT by U.S. News & World Report “Best Children’s Hospitals” list (2022-2023). In a survey of medical professionals in more than 20 countries by Newsweek, HSS is ranked world #1 in orthopedics for a third consecutive year (2023). Founded in 1863, the Hospital has the lowest complication and readmission rates in the nation for orthopedics, and among the lowest infection rates. HSS was the first in New York State to receive Magnet Recognition for Excellence in Nursing Service from the American Nurses Credentialing Center five consecutive times. An affiliate of Weill Cornell Medical College, HSS has a main campus in New York City and facilities in New Jersey, Connecticut and in the Long Island and Westchester County regions of New York State, as well as in Florida. In addition to patient care, HSS leads the field in research, innovation and education. The HSS Research Institute comprises 20 laboratories and 300 staff members focused on leading the advancement of musculoskeletal health through prevention of degeneration, tissue repair and tissue regeneration. The HSS Innovation Institute works to realize the potential of new drugs, therapeutics and devices. The HSS Education Institute is a trusted leader in advancing musculoskeletal knowledge and research for physicians, nurses, allied health professionals, academic trainees, and consumers in more than 145 countries. The institution is collaborating with medical centers and other organizations to advance the quality and value of musculoskeletal care and to make world-class HSS care more widely accessible nationally and internationally. www.hss.edu.