Spotlight on NPs

Spotlight on NPs highlights exciting achievements and activities of American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) members.

Alvin Mena Cantero is an AANP member and Cuban refugee who provides health care for underserved populations around the world. Cantero serves as a preceptor for NP students and provides home health visits in rural areas of Texas with a mobile clinic. In an article about his impressive role as a nurse practitioner, Cantero said, “Our impact on the community has grown by distributing information on vaccinations, risk factor management, and the importance of early detection of chronic diseases,” Cantero says. “We publish in English and Spanish through La Nota Houston, letting families know the importance of proper primary healthcare and prevention.”

AANP Region 2 Director Dr. Stephen Ferrara was quoted in a U.S. News & World Report article about ways to avoid diabetes product scams. “Health products and supplements not backed by the FDA do not undergo the same rigorous studies, and because they are sold as supplements, their manufacturers can make claims not supported by scientific evidence, Ferrara says. Additionally, the ingredients in supplements or similar nutritional products may vary widely from brand to brand.”

“If someone is being treated for a chronic disease like diabetes, it can be depressing,” AANP Fellow Dr. Randolph Rasch told the Lansing City Pulse in an article about a partnership to increase access to mental health care. “What nursing is about is about making sure you address the needs of the whole person.”

Congratulations to AANP Fellow Dr. Julie Marfell who was honored as a distinguished alumna of Hillsboro High School in Hillsboro, IL. “I became a family nurse practitioner to help address the issue of access to primary care, and I became an educator for the same reason,” Dr. Marfell said.  “I feel very fortunate to have been a part of the education of many nurse practitioners at both Rush University and Frontier Nursing University, and of nurse-midwives while at Frontier.  Seeing the alumni out there making a difference by providing health care in their communities is what makes me proud, and I am proud of their accomplishments.” Read the press release.

AANP Fellow Dr. Versie Johnson Mallard was among the authors of an article in the Huffington Post titled “How Repealing the Affordable Care Act Threatens Women, Families, and Health.” According to the authors, “All of these bills are an attack on women’s health and would have a disproportionate impact on low-income women and women of color. They would compromise America’s 3.6 million nurses’ ability to do their jobs and deliver high-quality, safe and efficient care.”

Congratulations to AANP Fellows Dr. Debra Barksdale and Dr. Demetrius Porche, who are among 14 nursing educators being inducted into the National League for Nursing’s Academy of Nursing Education this year. Read the press release.

“As health care and the disciplines of psychiatry and addictions continue to evolve, personalized medicine will become more and more the norm. Advanced practice nurses have an opportunity to serve in a critical and leading role during this emerging period by adding pharmacogenetic testing to assist in streamlining psychotropic medication options for their patients,” AANP member Laura Leahy wrote in “The Value of Genetic Testing to Psychiatric Nursing.” According to Leahy, “My extensive connection to pharmacy and pharmaceutical agents, and psychotropic medications in particular, is why I have embraced pharmacogenetic testing for patients who present with complex diagnostic issues and for whom various trials of medications have failed to provide symptom relief and emotional stability.”

AANP member Paula Glass was pictured in a Newsweek article about ways to reduce the costs of health care goods and services. According to the article, “For $57.8 billion annually – less than half of one percent of our current health care spend – a host of social investments, all health-producing in themselves, could be made.”

Congratulations to Francis Marion University’s (FMU) School of Health Sciences for receiving a $1 million Health Resources Service Administration’s (HRSA) Advanced Nursing Education Workforce (ANEW) grant to provide scholarship and academic support for nurse practitioner students. AANP member Deborah Hopla is director for FMU’s NP program. “FMU is committed to bringing quality healthcare to this state and this region,” Hopla said in a press release. “The Nurse Practitioner program is a big part of that. FNPs are, and will be, a critical part of the health care delivery in the future, in especially in underserved areas.”

Georgia Southern University School of Nursing received a $1.3 million ANEW grant from HRSA to  “support efforts to prepare advanced-practice nursing students to practice in rural and underserved settings through academic and clinical training. With the grant, the academic-practice partnership between the Georgia Southern School of Nursing and the five health centers will help increase the number and readiness of Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) and Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner(PMHNP) graduates to care for rural and underserved populations.” Learn more.

A HRSA grant in the amount of $1.3 million was also awarded to Washington State University College of Nursing to help improve access to health care in Eastern Washington. “We know from educational research that students trained in clinics that provide care to underserved people are more likely to practice in those clinics after graduation,” AANP member Janet Purath, project director and associate professor in the college of nursing, said in a press release.

An Extraordinary Healer Essay in Cure Today honored AANP member Dr. Mary Smania for her work to reduce barriers to cancer care. According to the essay, “Efforts to improve care and reach underserved populations are being accomplished through the use of an interprofessional team led by a nurse practitioner using expertise within the health care team, in the community and through marketing and social media.”

“When a patient leaves our practice, I hope that they have the right skill set, the right knowledge and the right attitude, so they can cope with their chronic disease,” AANP member Delmar Imperial Aubin said in a local news article about the growing number of visits to nurse practitioners. One patient said about visits to her nurse practitioner, “She makes me comfortable. It’s always quick and fast. I never have to wait long.”

Diabetes Self Management (DSM) mentioned a study on the importance of screening diabetes patients for depression that was presented by AANP members Dr. Kristel McGhee and Dr. Katherine Kenny at the AANP 2017 National Conference in Philadelphia. Read the DSM article.

AANP member Lindsey Turner was quoted in a local news article offering tips to keep people healthy during high temperatures. “Anytime that you’re having symptoms that are concerning, light headedness especially altered mental status, persistent muscle cramps or persistent vomiting. Anything like that you should definitely get checked out,” said Turner.

In the “Point/Counterpoint” section of the latest issue of The Journal for Nurse Practitioners (JNP), AANP member Bernadette Sosnowski argued that NPs can refocus on improving patient care, care quality and patient outcomes after ensuring appropriate staffing and reasonable provider/patient ratios. However, AANP Fellow Dr. Susan Apold said that rather than seeking answers from legislators, NPs can analyze staffing issues and develop solutions that meet the needs of each setting. Read their discussion.

Congratulations to AANP member Emelin Martinez who was recently named chief medical officer for Valley-Wide Health Systems in Alamosa, Colorado. The Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) offers comprehensive care including dental care, physical therapy, behavioral health care and other services integrated with medical care to improve overall health. Read the press release.

AANP member Krystal Sherrill was quoted in a local news article about the diabetes clinic where she works to educate and care for patients. The clinic offers a unique program to help cover some costs for patients who are uninsured.

Transitioning from pediatric to adult care can be stressful for patients, according to AANP member Christie Leath. In a local news article, Leath said, “To help create a smooth transition, coordinate responsibilities between the patient, family and provider so that they support and encourage the adolescent to assume adult roles and activities. It’s essential to encourage the youth to take responsibility for their own care and decision making early, so they feel comfortable advocating for themselves once they are on their own.”

Congratulations to the Jamaica Association of Nurse Practitioners (JANP) for celebrating 40 years of the NP role on the island. JANP has been a member of AANP since 2013. Dr. Cindy Cooke, Immediate Past President of AANP, and AANP Fellow Dr. Madrean Schober spoke at the event and are mentioned in this article about AANP members abroad.

The Huffington Post published “Six Tips for a Healthier, More Relaxing Summer” by AANP Immediate Past President Dr. Cindy Cooke. Drink up! Cooke recommends increasing intake of water, fruits and vegetables to stay hydrated. Read her other tips. Cooke offered readers of 30 Seconds five ways to help their families hack the summer heat, and Cooke’s article on SheKnows provided “Six Healthy Living Tips for Moms Who Need a Summer Break Too.”

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