Pediatric Psych Nurse, Katy, Lets Us Into Her World

The 618 Series Presents…DSC_9985Katy B., RN, sPNP

Specialty: Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Student and Per-diem Pediatric Psych/Pediatric Crisis Stabilization

The 618 Series is a series of interviews with Registered Nurses designed to give you an inside, uncensored look into real nurse life.

Katy, what are the 6 most interesting things about your specialty?
  1. I’m part nurse and part case manager. While half of my job is direct patient care, the other half is phone calls to gather collateral/coordinate next steps and working with our multidisciplinary team to ensure we have the most appropriate plan in place.
  2. Psych nurses work in a variety of settings. Our job descriptions can be incredibly different! I’ve only found a couple other facilities in my area that have nurses that do what I do.
  3. I am always assessing! While we do very few medical interventions on my unit, we are constantly doing mental status exams and being strategic about how we keep our kiddos safe.
  4. Transparency is everything. Discussing confidentiality and being a mandated reporter with young people in psychiatric crisis is SO incredibly important.
  5. Communication is key! Something else incredibly important is using active listening skills and therapeutic communication. It’s amazing how the way we handle a conversation can have such a huge impact on a kiddo struggling with their mental health.
  6. Scrubs are optional! We don’t have to wear scrubs! I choose to because they’re comfortable, hehe.
What is the number 1 thing you wish you had been told as a nursing student, and then Pediatric Nurse Practitioner student, before you started the program? 

Don’t sweat the small stuff. I remember feeling like I had to absorb EVERY little thing when I started nursing school. I learned to become comfortable with the concept of drinking out of a firehose and holding on to what was important and going to make me a competent and safe nurse (and soon to be APRN). As I’m finishing up my last few months as a pediatric nurse practitioner (PNP) student, I can’t believe how far I’ve come!

Lastly, if you had 8 minutes to speak to the entire world on one issue in healthcare, what would you speak about?

I would talk about the affect of ACEs (adverse childhood experience) on the life trajectory of young people and how we need to be trauma-informed as healthcare professionals in order to provide the best care possible.

BONUS: So, you mention that you’re a PNP student. Are you doing a face-to-face program or an online program? How many days a week do you have class?

Face-to-face! Depending on the quarter, I’ve been in class 2-3 days a week and in clinical rotations 1-4 days a week.

Check out Katy on Instagram, @katybpnp!

Read interviews with other specialties by clicking HERE, babies!~

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