Connie Nelson

Connie Nelson

Registered Nurse, Clinical Operations Consultant / Coach / Subject Matter Expert
Denver, CO

BS, Nursing Science Health Major
Emphasis in Management & Clinical Informatics
Regis University, Denver, CO

25+ years

Registered Nurse (RN) 


Ambulatory Surgery Administrator


Member, Association of periOperative Registered Nurses (AORN)

Member, National Institute for Healthcare Design (NIHD)


Clinical Operations / Healthcare Design / Project Manager / Perioperative Operations Specialist

Registered Nurse with a career spanning more than 25 years in clinical practice and hospital administration in strategic planning, nursing leadership, and project management. I was promoted to OR Manager for the EMR – Meditech ORM build team project which evolved into the project manager role for the construction of a new hospital, using LEAN and Six Sigma concepts to address operational efficiencies, workflows, supply chain, and sterile processing processes in preparation for the move into a new building across town. My role required extensive critical thinking skills, decisive judgement and the ability to work independently and within team environments.

I lead the Perioperative and Procedural area preparation, transition and activation team which took place over a two-year period. Our team created a very detailed, yet efficient transition and activation plan where we continued performing surgeries during the move with only a 6-hour divert and successful response to 2 emergencies within 30 minutes of resuming operations. Before, during and after the move, I learned many lessons which changed my perspective and the direction of my career. I was able to be the communication bridge between the construction industry, vendors, and front-line staff like myself and found that it was the most satisfying thing I have ever done in my life.

In 2018 I started Colorado ACES Consulting and I now serve as a voice of clinicians and front-line staff helping hospitals, architects, and designers better understand the complexity and importance of design and the impact it can have on workflows and processes especially in procedural area space. I have partnered with architectural design firms and construction companies interfacing with hospitals in the development of an integrated interventional platform for an international critical care hospital and level 1 trauma center with the goal of consolidating procedural areas onto one platform and sharing staff, resources, equipment and storage. As the Interventional Advisor and subject matter expert during the design development phase operational planning workshops were held to test the design of the building against the needs from a patient, staff and equipment/supply perspective. I also worked to develop a strategy evaluating future state proposed storage space needs with a deep dive analysis into supplies and equipment flow and storage; creating a tiered system for line-item analysis so staff can easily evaluate and prioritize equipment, supplies and implants to inform strategic, operational, functional and space planning.




     developing and implementing departmental goals, plans, and standards while maintaining alignment with the mission of the hospital and projects
     managing operations, information technology, and service level determination, complaint management, performance, and quality objectives
     planning, coordination, and staffing activities including hiring, orienting, evaluating, disciplinary actions, and continuing education resources
     planning, monitoring, and management of budgets and compliance with allocated funding


     Attend construction-related meetings as a clinical representative
     Provide insight into how processes, workflows, and efficiencies can be improved and highlights opportunities to do so.
     Support staff education and orientation using resources & tools (floor plans, equipment lists, issues trackers)


     Oversee work-group activities
     Adapt future state processes in collaboration with department representatives
     Track Milestones/monitor schedule
     Contribute to development of training
     Contribute to the development of new workflows, including standardization, efficiency & policies
     Assist with internal communication such as FAQ, portal updates, marketing/communication planning


     Create/integrate department and patient move plans
     Conduct Tabletop Exercises and Mock Moves
     Anticipate licensure and accreditation requirements
     Monitor IT integration
     Run failure modes analysis
     Help manage issues log


     Identify & support learners/assign teachers
     Help create and conduct live simulations with staff or super users
     Support just-in-time learning
     Produce training materials


     Coordinate final fit-up planning
     Participate in department-specific orientations, such as those pertaining to new equipment, medical devices, IT integration, and storage facilities
     Support and facilitate departmental moves
     Track resolution outstanding transition issues
     Participate in de-commissioning plan

  • Electronic Medical Record Core Team
  • Clinical Informatics Integration & Process Improvement
  • Peri-op Steering Committee
  • LEAN – Periop VSA
  • Scheduling Internal/External
  • Hospital/Surgical Department Visioning/Strategy/Design/Transition Planning/Activation
  • Surgical Supply Chain
  • RIE – Wasted OR Implants & Item Charges
  • State of Colorado – Safety Surveillor
  • Campus Consolidation – Workflow/Transition
  • Materials Management – Lowest Unit of Measure Integration
  • Surgical Process Improvement – Patient Safety/SCIP
  • API/Kronos/Inovar
  • Summit Downtime Project
  • Mesa Temperature Monitoring
  • Voalte / MC-40 / VoalteMe Implementation & Management
  • Grace Place – Production Team
  • Saddle Notch Ranch Road Association Board Of Directors X 10 years

through Systems Analysis & Process Re-engineering