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Integrative Healing Arts Program in Holistic Nursing

Become a Holistic Nurse. The Integrative Healing Arts Program in Holistic Nursing prepares nurses to (1) take pivotal roles in a new paradigm of healthcare and (2) complete the AHNCC Holistic Nursing certification application and exam through a unique 84-hour continuing nursing education (CNE) program in a retreat setting.
Healing arts are interventions that foster the healing process, facilitate deeper levels of self-understanding and wholeness, and honor the body, mind, emotions, and spirit. The demand for healing arts skills in holistic nursing is escalating because the public is increasingly seeking healing that honors the whole being, including the body, mind, emotion, and spirit. 
IHAP is offered in retreat-type settings across the USA. IHAP graduates:
  • Receive a certificate in Holistic Nursing and Integrative Modalities
  • Use holistic principles and modalities in their daily life and in clinical practice
  • Create a space within and around themselves that allows them to be an instrument of healing
  • Use their authenticity, caring presence, and nursing skills to facilitate birth, growth, recovery, and end-of-life transition 
  • Provide healing arts, grounded in a foundation of holism, in all healthcare settings including hospitals, universities, and private practices

IHAP Is a 3-Session Program

  • Session 1: "The Self-Actualized Holistic Nurse" 27 CNE Contact Hours
  • Session 2: "Holistic Relationship-Centered Care" 27 CNE Contact Hours
  • Session 3: "Enlightened Leadership" 30 CNE Contact Hours

Note: Session 1 is a pre-requisite to taking Session 2, and Session 2 is a pre-requisite to taking Session 3.

It is strongly recommended that participants take all three IHAP Sessions to maximize their ability to practice Holistic Nursing and pass the Holistic Nurse certification exam. Participants are not required to attend all three sessions to take the certification exam. 

Learning Content

Core Topics (Developed During All 3 Sessions)
•    Artistry of Authentic Communication
•    Caring for Self; Caring for Others
•    Philosophy & Spirituality in Healing
•    Theory as a Foundation for Holistic Nursing Practice
•    Nutrition as Nourishment for BodyMindSpirit
•    Energy Systems & Energy Healing
•    Transformational Leadership for Organizational Change

1-Day Immersion Topics
•    Session 1: Intro to Clinical Aromatherapy
•    Session 2: Intro to Therapeutic Music & Guided Imagery
•    Session 3: Intro to Acupressure (or Reflexology: varies by location)

Each session will have 3 instructors and a maximum of 40 participants.


Registration requires a $300 deposit to hold your place. 

Standard tuition includes all 3 sessions, learning materials, 84 CNE contact hours, meals and lodging for $3745, but varies with choices of commuter (includes lunch only), shared or private room occupancy, and payment plan. A discount is available to AHNA members. 

More Info

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Dates and Locations

East Coast: The Guest House Retreat Center in Chester, CT*

Registration is now open.

  • Session 1: Sept. 20-23, 2018
  • Session 2: Feb. 7-10, 2019
  • Session 3: June 20-23, 2019

The Guest House in Chester, CT

West Coast: IONS Earthrise Retreat Center in Petaluma, CA*

Registration will open on August 1, 2018.

  • Session 1: Jan. 31-Feb 3, 2019
  • Session 2: April 18-21, 2019
  • Session 3: July 18-21, 2019

IONS Earthrise Retreat Center

*Students who complete the first two sessions in either of these locations will meet the CE requirements for the July 1, 2019 application deadlines for the AHNCC certification exam.
Midwest: Weber Retreat Center in Adrian, MI**
  • Session 1: July 11-14, 2019
  • Session 2: Oct. 10-13, 2019
  • Session 3: Jan. 16-19, 2020

Weber Retreat Center

East Coast: Pendle Hill in Wallingford, PA**
  • Session 1: Aug. 15-18, 2019
  • Session 2: Nov. 14-17, 2019
  • Session 3: March 5-8, 2020

Pendle Hill

**Students who complete the first two sessions in either of these locations will meet the CE requirements for the December 1, 2019 application deadlines for the AHNCC certification exam.

East Coast Faculty

Colleen Delaney

Colleen Delaney PhD, RN, AHN-BC, HWNC-BC of Woodbury, CT is an Associate Research Professor and Founding Director of the Graduate Certificate Program in Holistic Nursing at the University of Connecticut; a consultant for the Connecticut Association of Healthcare at Home, an Associate Editor Journal of Holistic Nursing, and Treasurer for the American Holistic Nurses Association. Colleen received her BSN, MSN and PhD at the University of Connecticut and finished her postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Connecticut Health Center in 2008. She received the Virginia Henderson Research Award from the Connecticut Nurses Association in 2015 and has been the author of numerous publications and the recipient of several research grants.

Cathy Alvarez

Catherine M. Alvarez, RN, MA, BS, CNML, HNB-BC, PCCN of Orange, CT is an Education Specialist at Yale New Haven Hospital in New Haven, CT. Cathy designs and implements nursing education programs that specifically focus on self-care, mindfulness, and resiliency. She received her BSN from Elmira College, in Elmira, NY and obtained her Master of Arts with an emphasis in Health Arts and Sciences from Goddard College in Plainfield, VT.

Midwest Faculty

Marian Long

Marian Long RN MSN AHN-BC CHTP/I HWNC-BC of Grayling, MI is a Holistic RN with a private practice of energy work, coaching, consulting and speaking. She received her BSN through Regis University in Denver, CO and her MSN through Tennessee State University. She has 35 years' experience as a clinician and educator in many traditional and holistic settings, and enjoys empowering people to facilitate high level wellness in all dimensions. 

Mary Shackelford

Mary Shackelford RN, BSN, CHHC, HN-BC of St. Louis, MO is the owner of Mary Shackelford Wellness Solutions where she serves as coach, speaker and facilitator in holistic wellness. She also serves as a Quality Improvement Advisor at the Missouri Hospital Association. Mary received her BSN from Lincoln University in Jefferson City, MO and is certified as an Energy Codes Facilitator, a holistic health coach, Reiki practitioner, and a board certified holistic nurse.

West Coast Faculty

Marty Downey

Margaret "Marty" Downey, MS, Ph.D., RN, AHN-BC, CHTP/IT, of Boise, ID is a nurse educator and former critical care nurse with a BSN from Marycrest College in Davenport, IA; an MS in Nursing Education from Idaho State University, and a PhD from the University of Idaho. She is board certified as an Advanced Holistic Nurse and certified as a Healing Touch Practitioner. Marty is an Emeritus Associate Professor/Adjunct faculty at Boise State University School of Nursing; an educator for holistic nursing courses, and a research nurse mentor contributing to holistic research projects, presentations, and publications at St Luke's Health System Research Fellowship Center for Nursing Excellence. A long-time member of AHNA and recent AHNA Research Chair, Marty has a private Healing Touch practice and a heart-centered passion for holistic nursing.

Kathleen Bell

Kathleen J. Bell RN, MSN, CNM, MS1-BC, AHN-BC of Cannon Beach, OR is an adjunct professor at the Linfield College- Good Samaritan School of Nursing in Portland, OR. She received her BSN from Boston College and her MSN from the University of Utah. Kathleen’s career has focused on maternal–child nursing, nurse-midwifery, women’s health, nursing education, integrative health and holistic nursing. She is certified as an Advanced Holistic Nurse by the American Holistic Nurses Credentialing Corporation Association (AHNCC), and as a Meditation Specialist by the Center for Meditation Science. Kathleen serves as a special advisor to the Board of Directors of the National Association of Nutrition Professionals, and to the Board of Directors of the Oregon Holistic Nurses Association. Her publications are varied.