Spotlight on NPs

Spotlight on NPs is a weekly article that highlights exciting achievements and activities of American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) members.

Congratulations to AANP Fellow and former AANP Wyoming State Rep Mary Behrens who received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Wyoming Nurses Association and was recognized with an entry in the Congressional Record by Sen. John Barrasso that described her outstanding career.  Ms. Behrens was formerly Mayor of Casper, Wyoming, a Natrona County commissioner and member of the Wyoming House of Representatives.

Bridgett Harr, an AANP member, was the lead author of a study that found, “When high-risk head and neck patients who were treated with chemoradiation therapy underwent frequent follow-up visits with advanced practice nurses, they received more intensive symptom management, which led to fewer post-treatment emergency room visits and hospital admissions.” The research was presented at the American Society for Radiation Oncology’s (ASTRO’s) 57th annual meeting. Read the article.  Congratulations are also in order, since Ms. Harr was awarded the ASTRO 2015 Annual Meeting Nurses Abstract Award.  The award honors the highest rated abstract with a nursing designation submitted for their annual meeting.  Read the press release.

AANP Fellow Dr. MaryEllen Roberts attended the first National Policy & Science Summit on Women’s Cardiovascular Health, sponsored by Women Heart the National Coalition for Women and Heart Disease.  The invitation-only event convened women with heart disease and leaders in women’s cardiovascular health to develop policy solutions to key unanswered questions in cardiovascular research, with the goal of improving cardiovascular health for women.  View pictures from the event.

Rhode Island College mentioned AANP member and director of College Health Services Lynn Wachtel in an article about the important role the clinic plays during flu season.  Staffed by nurse practitioners who offer a holistic approach to health care, the clinic emphasizes prevention and health education and coordinates with other campus resources to ensure that students’ needs are met.   “Learning for Life, in particular, has been an important resource,” said Ms. Wachtel. “There are students who come in who are homeless, who have financial problems or social problems or who aren’t doing well in school for whatever reason. Learning for Life has been very helpful in giving these students assistance and connecting them to services in the community.”

Dr. Dana Beck, an AANP member, described the importance of primary care in a recent article in the Portsmouth Daily Times.  She explained that primary care providers are prepared to handle much of the care needed by patients with chronic conditions like diabetes.

Congratulations to AANP Fellow and past Region 8 Director Gwen Witzel, who was the first recipient of the University of North Dakota Nurse Practitioner Outstanding Alumni Award.  Ms. Witzel also serves on a committee with the Department of Health and Human Services in Washington, D.C., working with a federal program to aid in attracting health care providers to practice in rural communities.  Read more.

Maureen Byrd, an AANP member, was featured in an article about a multidisciplinary approach for patients with breast cancer.  According to the article, Ms. Byrd “helped lead the charge in developing the hospital’s Breast Health Center 12 years ago and was asked to be the first breast cancer oncology navigator.”

AANP Fellow Dr. Scharmaine Baker and her children’s book series “Nola the Nurse” were featured in Johnson & Johnson’s Discover Nursing newsletter, Nursing Notes.   According to the article, “Dr. Baker wanted to expose young audiences to the world of advanced practice nursing, while also showcasing the diversity of the modern healthcare world. Nola’s friends are registered nurses, certified midwives and nurse anesthetist’s. They interact with people from all over the world and tackle important issues like natural disasters and cultural sensitivity.”

Heather Del Villar, an AANP member and chief nurse practitioner at CareMore was quoted in an article about the company’s new program to prevent type 2 diabetes in patients at risk for the disease.  According to Ms. Del Villar, “A program like this represents a fundamental shift from how our nation has approached diabetes in the past.  We need to devote as much time and resources to preventing the disease as we do in treating it.”

Congratulations to AANP Fellow and Region 2 Director Dr. Don Gardenier who, along with his colleague Dr. Jeffrey Weiss, was recognized as an Edge Runner by the American Academy of Nursing (AAN). According to AAN, “Raise the Voice: Edge Runners are the practical innovators who have led the way in bringing new thinking and new methods to a wide range of health care challenges.”

AANP member Jaime Stuke was credited with a nearly 30 percent growth rate at a clinic that is breaking ground for a new location.  According to Carrie Saia, Holton Community Hospital chief executive officer, “People want to know their provider and want that consistency in their care, and Jamie has done that.”  Read more.

Congratulations to AANP member Dr. Christine Colella who received the Excellence and Innovation in Teaching Award from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.  Dr. Colella is associate professor and director of nurse practitioner programs at the University of Cincinnati, and she ensure that distance learners receive an education that is equally as robust students onsite.  According to Dr. Colella, “Technology makes information more accessible, portable and it puts everyone on an even playing ground in terms of education.”  Read the press release.

AANP member Jason Lucey was mentioned in an article from New Hampshire Public Radio about grassroots efforts in the state to make the overdose drug Narcan easier to obtain.  According to Mr. Lucey,  “the downsides of prescribing naloxone are very few and the upsides are that it keeps someone alive, who otherwise would likely die if they overdose on an opioid.”

Congratulations to AANP member Sally Morgan, who is the new president of the Ohio Nurses Association.  Read the press release.

AANP Fellow Dr. Heather Johnson was quoted in an article about the new Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner Program at the Uniformed Services University’s Graduate School of Nursing.  According to the article, “the Air Force is the only branch that specifically has active duty WHNPs, the other branches employ civilian WHNPs. “ Dr. Johnson said, “In the deployed environment, there are a lot of un­met needs for our women service members.  With this specialized program, our nurse practitioners can deploy and meet those needs in the field.”

Best wishes to AANP member Beverlee Furner who is running for re-election on the City Council in Middleton, Idaho – another great example of the many ways that nurse practitioners lead.  Read more.  #NPsLead

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