Nurse Practitioner & Discharge Liaison; Heart Failure Program Maimonides Medical Center
Adjunct Professor –LIU School of Nursing
As a child, I always looked forward to the Christmas season. It was a time to see my friends, spend time with them playing video games; as well as visiting Rockefeller Center. Unfortunately; days before Christmas 1990, I was admitted to Beth-Israel Hospital in New York. It was not the Christmas I looked forward to, as I was admitted for about a month. Even upon discharge from the hospital, I required frequent follow-up appointments with my pediatrician. This was not a memorable time in my life, and it stuck with me for a long time.
Fortunately; I remember having exceptional doctors and nurses who took care of me, as well as comforted and reassured my family. This very difficult and scary moment in my life stuck to me, and is what inspired me to become a nurse. I wanted to give back and provide the same care to others, as I was given as a child. In college, I decided to pursue my degree in nursing, which would be the stepping stones in my career to come. I completed my BSN in December 2016 at Long Island University – Brooklyn Campus, where I am currently an adjunct professor.
My passion for nursing and delivering quality care for patients inspired me to pursue my advanced degree. In May 2012, I completed my Adult and Gerontological nurse practitioner degree at Hunter College. By broadening my scope of practice as a nurse practitioner, I’ve come to realize that there are many opportunities in nursing. It is a profession that encourages growth, as well as various roles in health care without losing the very foundation of nursing; which is caring for the patient. As a nurse practitioner; I find myself constantly utilizing previously learned skills and knowledge as a registered nurse. Nursing is a special profession, in which we are behooved to apply science; but also called to be human by providing the caring/nurturing factor to our patients.
Nursing is definitely an enjoyable profession, despite its challenges. Most of the challenges in nursing are related to the global challenge of health care disparity. Despite the effort of standardizing quality care; health care is complex and it’s difficult to make it a “one size fits all”. Indeed, there are many barriers to delivering nursing care from a unit based level in a hospital-setting, a community setting such as access to care, and on health care delivery systems on a nationwide level. I do believe that the challenges in nursing is a result of systems defect or lack of protocol, the continual change in innovation and research, and most importantly the population we care for. Given these challenges; I strongly believe that nurses should be on the frontline of healthcare. Nursing is a profession that is most fit to help address these challenges by focusing on improving quality of care and developing processes to achieve good clinical outcomes and improve patient satisfaction. With that said; I decided to pursue my DNP at Hunter College, and will be starting this Fall.
It is difficult to be selective on who is my most memorable patient. I always believe that every patient should be memorable. However, I do remember some complex situations. For instance; a patient who has a high clinical suspicion for advanced lung cancer which metastasized to her brain adamantly refused to undergo an MRI of the brain. This patient received multiple opinions with other lung cancer program. Some institutions gave up on her, and one institution recommended treatment without completing her work-up with a brain MRI. Utilizing a multidisciplinary approach; our team was able to stage her lung cancer and unfortunately she had a positive brain MRI. Based on these findings, we were able to utilize evidence based guidelines to provide her with the correct treatment plan. Another situation is a patient who is on a Milrinone-dependent infusion and wanted to leave against medical advice (AMA) from a skilled nursing facility. Again with a multidisciplinary approach; we were able to safely transition her home with an infusion RN to help manage her in a home setting. We were able to arrange for follow-up appointments for close monitoring given the complexity of her disease and medical needs.
My vision for the NYC Men in Nursing is to continually increase our volume and support from major medical centers and nursing schools. In saying that; I believe that it will help if more experienced registered nurses participate in our mentorship program and help strengthen it, as well as be mentors for nursing students.