Adriana L. Castaño

Adriana L. Castaño, MS ‘12 
2016 – 2017 Rising Star Alumni Award Winner

Adriana Castano’s impact on the clinical care, leadership, education and approach centered on patients and their families transcends the pages of her resume and represents the caliber of a professional that RSONAA would be proud honor.

Since finding her calling for acute care as a staff nurse in multi-specialty intensive care unit (ICU) at Morristown Medical Center (MMC), she has excelled at nursing care and progressed to be an active player in quality improvement programs and unit-based shared governance council. She grew into a leadership role and became instrumental in decisions surrounding day-to-day unit operations. As she progressed through graduate school, her research into the benefits of chlorhexidine use on ICU patients was the foundation behind translating this evidence into practice, with a goal of decreasing infections amongst critically ill. Throughout this path, she never lost sight of what is most important to nursing discipline, and her dedication to patient and family centered care influenced the facility to transition to 24-hour visiting hours as well as remodel patient’s waiting room.

As an Adult Care Nurse Practitioner, Adriana has expanded her expertise into an operating room and was the drive behind initiation of peri-operative bundle for neurosurgical patients, which lead to a decrease in surgical site infections. She played an important position in implementing a nationally established, but locally innovative approach to promoting continuity of care as well as patient and family satisfaction through re-structuring of clinician roles within a large private practice. 

Adriana is highly esteemed amongst general healthcare workers as well as peers and medical providers with expressions such as “compassionate, “dedicated,” and “proficient” only touching the surface of what she represents. Perhaps the biggest impact that she has made is one that will be indirectly felt by patients and the community; it is her passion for education. She is known to take the time to explain the rationale behind an intervention to newly hired nurses. She has also taken on the role of preceptor for multiple nurse practitioner students, including Rutgers, and transforms a critical care setting, where patients and their family face some of the most challenging times of their lives, into a learning-friendly environment conducive of preparing future clinicians. Furthermore, her devotion to life-long learning is building a novel medium where highly specialized surgeons take the time to share their expertise with nurse practitioners, which is an uncommon practice outside of teaching hospitals.

Adriana humbly associates her success and approach to clinical care, leadership and teaching with the training she received at the Rutgers School of Nursing. Her insight was one of the most-important influences for me to pursue further studies under the same mentors that have instilled passion, competence, and overall foundation for clinical care and further progress of nursing discipline that Adriana Castano signifies. 


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