Weekend Wrap Up 2.24.17

Hey, hey, it's Friday! What are you all up to this weekend? The weather is fantastic here in Nashville this late February morning. So, I'm looking forward to some patio sitting tonight - perhaps over chips, guac and a margarita... What's getting you through the workday? If you're prematurely in weekend mode, pass the time by checking out this week's more interesting medical news. 

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A Pharmacist's Top Drug Resource Recommendations for NPs & PAs

This week, nurse practitioners in our inaugural Midlevels for the Medically Underserved class sat in on a presentation from pharmacist Dr. Jon Pouliot about medication interactions in the primary care setting. With so many of our patients taking multiple medications, it can be tough as NPs and PAs to keep track of interaction considerations, as well as drug side effects and dosages. So, helpfully, Dr. Pouliot ended the presentation by suggesting a few practical resources nurse practitioners and physician assistants can use for prescribing. 

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Medical Translation App Essentials for Nurse Practitioners

Do you encounter language barriers in your work as a nurse practitioner? As NPs, we care for patients of diverse backgrounds. To get to the root of the problem, it's most helpful to communicate in the patient's native language. When this doesn't occur, valuable information can be lost. Not to mention, federal law requires that healthcare facilities that receive federal funding offer language services to patients who need them. 

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3 Questions to Ask When Choosing a Physician Assistant Program

If you've decided to become a physician assistant, the next step in starting your career is to choose a PA program. With hundreds of physician assistant programs across the country, how do you determine which schools will prepare you best for your future?

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How to Present a Patient to Your Preceptor with Style

Oh the dread! If you're a nurse practitioner student going through a tough round of clinicals, one cause of your education-related anxiety is likely presenting patients to your preceptor. Summing up a patient in a brief on-the-fly presentation is tricky. Although you've written plenty of SOAP notes, nurse practitioner students often struggle with communicating this kind of information verbally. So, how do you neatly package your next patient encounter and deliver the message in a svelte manner? 

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Overwhelmed? How I Cope as a Nurse Practitioner

Nurse practitioners at any level of experience can become overwhelmed with their jobs. Increasing patient volumes may challenge even the most efficient NP. Complex clinical cases can be difficult for new grad nurse practitioners to digest. And, starting a new position involving the navigation of different staffing structures and an unfamiliar EHR system can be downright difficult. So, what do you do when your nurse practitioner job becomes overwhelming?

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Washington's Teeth and Lincoln's 'Melancholia': Health Problems of U.S. Presidents

The public image of (most of) our nation's leaders is so skillfully upheld that we often think them immune to common medical issues. Did you ever seen Obama smoke in public? Or deliver a televised speech with a nasally voice while suffering from the common cold? I didn't. It turns out that many of our country's leaders have endured some serious health scares, often in secret.

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Tax Implications of Your Nurse Practitioner Job Offer

I have been procrastinating from getting my tax return materials together for exactly 47 days now. And, there's no end in sight when it comes to my lack of motivation. Sigh. Filing my tax return, or rather gathering all the necessary paperwork just in time for my CPA to file an extension, is exactly the type of thing that requires much less effort than anticipated and the dread it causes is worse than the act itself. I need to get my act together. But, not quite yet...

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The Nurse Practitioner's Guide to Handling Upset Patients

Security! Working as a nurse practitioner in the emergency department, I've encountered my fair share of upset patients. Sometimes, these interactions escalate and require intervention from hospital security staff or are unfounded and based on psychiatric illness or substance abuse to name a few. Most often, however, frustrated patients have a legitimate concerns that deserve acknowledgement. 

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Confessions of a Former New Grad Nurse Practitioner

These days, I think I may even take patients by surprise with my abilities in the emergency department. I look younger than my thirty (ugh) years, or so I am told. So, when I enter a patient's room to suture a laceration or drain an abscess, I get that "Wait! you're the one who's going to be doing this?!" look. Then, when the patient sees the results of a perfectly placed set of sutures it becomes apparent I've done the same job everyday for five plus years. It wasn't always this way. 

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Valentine's Cards for Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants

Happy Valentine's Day! I hope this excuse to eat chocolate is getting you out of the mid-week slump. My husband and I have decided that we're tired of elbowing our way through crowded restaurants to celebrate the holiday, so we're cooking in. What are you up to? If you could use a little advanced practice humor to get you through the work day, check out these Valentine's cards perfect for nurse practitioners and physician assistants. 

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6 Primary Care Podcasts for Nurse Practitioners On-the-Go

How do you use your downtime? As a nurse practitioner, even with eight years of experience, I often feel that I still have so much to learn. One of the great (but challenging) things about the medical profession is that healthcare is constantly evolving and changing. To help keep up to date with the latest in clinical practice, I often turn to podcasts. These audio education series are the perfect way to put downtime in the car to use and pay off in my practice. 

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