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Clinical Nurse Specialists


The National League for Nursing Education first drew up a plan to create the clinical nurse specialist role in the 1940s. The first master's degree program opened in 1954 at Rutgers University; the only specialty offered at that time was psychiatric nursing. By 1970, clinical nurse specialty certification had become available in a number of fields in response to the increased specialization in health care, the development of new technologies, and the need to provide alternative, cost-efficient health care in the physician shortage of the 1960s.

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