As a mental health nurse with the VA Northeast Ohio Healthcare System, Pamela Barton, RN, BC, views nursing as a vehicle for change within healthcare. In her Year of the Nurse reflection, Barton shares her observations on nursing, the impact of evidence-based patient care and the patient relationship experience and leadership nurses bring to interdisciplinary healthcare teams.
My name is Pamela Barton RN, BC. I am a mental health nurse at the VA, Parma Clinic. I work in MHICM (Mental Health Intensive Case Management), a community-based program that serves veterans in the community with severe mental illness. My role varies from day to day. While treating each veteran with respect and compassion, I provide supportive counseling, medication management, coordination of care, assistance with accessing community resources, empowering the veteran, providing ongoing education, and advocate for the client.
I see nursing as the driving force in change of our healthcare system. Nurses focus on the goal of the client. Evidence-based care allows us to raise standards and improve outcomes. Nursing staff spends the greatest amount of time with each client and this allows us to develop a trusting, working relationship. This bond is what helps nurses to develop patient-centered goals and individualize care plans. I believe that nurses bring this unique experience to the table when working with the multidisciplinary team.
My passion for nursing grows as I see how I am able to make an impact on the veterans that I serve. There is nothing better than seeing a veteran succeed and reach a personal goal. That smile, that pride, and the two small words ”thank you” mean the most. It is a privilege to touch some many lives everyday.