Thirteen legal nurse consultants of West Virginia met on Wednesday, January 24, 2001 to discuss and initiate the formation of the first American Association of Legal Nurse Consultants Chapter in the state of West Virginia. We were welcomed as an official chartered chapter on August 1, 2001 and designated as Chapter #51 with the name “West Virginia Upper Ohio Valley Chapter”.

The West Virginia Upper Ohio Valley Chapter strives to achieve the goals of the parent organization. Those goals are to promote the professional advancement of registered nurses practicing in a consulting capacity within the legal arena and to provide a resource for information on matters relating to legal aspects of nursing and health care law.

Recently the chapter teamed with the Wheeling Academy of Law and Science to share legal/medical education for liability and litigation issues. The two organizations intend to push a common goal of professionalism and effective fact-finding to support fair outcomes in the legal medical liability arena. The academy and contributing lawyers expect to strengthen the Ohio Valley’s commitment to fair and just legal representation and medical practice considerations.

Although the West Virginia Upper Ohio Valley Chapter has a relatively short history, its achievements have been impressive. The chapter has provided continuing education and dynamic networking opportunities. Its nurses assisted with the founding of the Legal Nurse Consultant Section of the West Virginia Bar Association. This marks the first time a bar association has extended an invitation of membership to legal nurse consultants. The installation links medical and legal professional educational information sharing.

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