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Standing next to a patient Interview with Ms. Stacy Paul

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Japan has also started the system of “Nurse Practitioner,” which is coming under the spotlight as a professional who has a perspective of nursing and medicine and can save a doctor shortage. In the United States, professionally trained nurse practitioners examine and treat patients. Stacy is working as a nurse practitioner at a hospital in Chicago, Illinois and her story was full of a sense of responsibility to her job and her feelings about Japan.

To nursing based on her experience in Africa
In college, I majored public health and started to work as a research assistant. My supervisor is a psychiatrist and I was lucky surrounded with a nice work place and job so I decided to go to a graduate school to be a nurse practitioner. I pursued a bachelor’s degree in nursing and participated in a nurse practitioner program. I studied with colleagues who have backgrounds in public health, business, chemistry and so on.

What made me to become a nurse practitioner was my experience during a mission trip to Zambia. I taught them hand washing, but we couldn’t provide any prescriptions nor injections. Only having the experience of conversing with the patient, I began to think of carrying out medical practice at the hospital and thus aspire to be a nurse practitioner.

The difference between doctor and the medical care nurse.

The patient under my care are youngsters from age 2 to 21 years old. My specialty is psychiatry and my main roles are to provide consultancy, treatment and prescription of drugs to children, occasionally to adults. I provide consultancy, prescription of drugs, carrying out MRI and X-ray. On the other hand, the doctor will take charge of the operation and patient with severe symptoms. (Note: The authority of a medical care nurse varies accordingly with the states and hospitals).

Difficulties I have experienced in the hospital are also the motivating factors of the job. I do come across children who have been severely abused. For their safety, the children who are depressed and suicidal are summoned to the hospital. However, there is a need to go through the procedure to apply for child protection in the event of any disapproval by the children or even their parent, and in the event where they cannot be persuaded, hospitalization is sometime mandatory. The unconvinced parent and children may also threaten the hospital. Though we would try to help the children and their family, it is painful to know that we were thought to be hurting them.

On the other hand, when we feel that someone is able to help, the job is rewarding. An eleven-year-old girl could not read letters, but there is no problem with the intelligence test. However, she was ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). After she was given therapy and medicines, she became to be able to read the whole book, though she could not read at all three months before, I was really surprised at such progress in a short term.
stacey-1

As the person beside

There are few nurses practitioners in Japan compared to the numbers in the United States. We have a lot of patients are supportive of the medical treatment nurses who spend for a long time with the patients. Also, we have advantage of having the knowledge of nursing other sciences so that we can approach to the illness in various ways. For example, I understand that social factors such as homeless and divorce influence the disease greatly. I think nurses and nurse practitioners are necessary to support patients as the person beside.

As I am a Christian, I would like people to be happy by realizing what God desire, sharing the feeling with those around me and being merciful. The desire to help and please people can be used in the work of the nurse practitioner. It is not sufficient only to be interested in biology and medicine to work with patients; you need patience. It is not enough to make money and like medical science to be a doctor or a nurse. However excellent you are, if you treat your patients harshly, you are not a doctor nor nurse.

A Message for Japanese women

I was raised with Japanese culture and I have visited Japan many times. I think the balance of work and private is important. You may be working hard in Japan, but it is also important to treat yourself nicely. Set boundaries and enjoy yourself. When you are at work, do your best. Don’t overwork and you will regret missing the time with your friends and family.
At my workplace, all four nurses are female. That’s the typical case but the current nurse trainees are one female and one male. Moreover, the ratio of male to female for doctor is even. The sympathy women have is now most needed in the medical world.