I graduated from Vanderbilt’s Family Nurse Practitioner program in 2015, and moved to Charlotte, North Carolina, shortly thereafter. While in Charlotte, I worked on the inpatient Neurology team at a large medical center. I quickly found my niche in caring for acute stroke patients and their families, and was eager to learn more. I began an Advanced Practice Neurovascular Fellowship (NET SMART) in the spring of 2016. During this experience, I had the opportunity to spend time working alongside stroke NPs and PAs from around the world on the Mobile Stroke Unit in Memphis, Tennessee. The Mobile Stroke Unit is an ambulance equipped with CT imaging, allowing someone suffering an acute ischemic stroke to be treated safely with IV thrombolytic before even leaving the scene. After completing this fellowship and subsequent board exam, I was certified as an Advanced Neurovascular Practitioner (ANVP-BC).
At the end of last year, my husband’s career moved us back to Nashville, where I began working at Vanderbilt Neurosurgery with the Cerebrovascular and Brain Tumor teams. In this unique outpatient role, I provide care to patients with carotid artery disease, strokes, brain aneurysms and vascular malformations, and brain tumors. This includes seeing patients in the clinic both pre- and post-operatively, as well as following their disease clinically and radiographically before, and in many cases after, surgical intervention. A few of the most rewarding aspects of my role include building relationships with my patients and their families and spending time educating about their disease process to empower them to improve their overall health.
Shortly after beginning my role at VUMC, I had the privilege to participate at the International Stroke Conference Advanced Practice Provider (APP) Luncheon this year as an invited speaker. I facilitated a round table discussion on the topic "Measuring the Impact of Advanced Practice Providers" during the lunch hour--exploring APP roles in stroke systems of care, reviewing metrics used for measuring outcomes specific to the APP role, and discussing opportunities to maximize APP impact in stroke care. In July, my role will be evolving to include research, as I will be spending a year as Vanderbilt’s NIH StrokeNet research trainee. I am looking forward to this next adventure, focusing specifically on brain aneurysm research.
Outside of the clinic, I enjoy spending time outdoors – running, playing with my golden retriever, and being at the lake with my family. My husband and I also love to travel every chance we get! We plan to explore Vancouver this summer, and we have an exciting trip with friends planned after the holidays to Australia.