HELPING PATIENTS FEEL BETTER – APRN BUILDS RAPPORT
story and photo by Van Mitchell, Staff Writer
Beth Miller, APRN, is a board-certified nurse practitioner with INTEGRIS Health Medical Group Edmond Women’s Health.
She has been a registered nurse for 18 years and a women’s health nurse practitioner for three of those years.
Miller said she loves to treat women of all ages and has a passion for helping her patients feel better, both physically and psychologically.
“When coming to see me, a patient can expect someone who is going to listen to them, address their concerns and provide appropriate education,” she said. “I want them to feel like they’re coming to see a friend.” (story continues below)
Miller earned a Bachelor of Science in nursing from Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, and a Master of Science in nursing from the University of Cincinnati in Ohio.
She said didn’t initially plan on becoming a women’s health nurse practitioner.
“I was a robotics coordinator and I pretty much did the gynecology part, and I just fell in love with it and I would’ve never thought that,” Miller said. “If you’d told me 20 years ago this is what I’d be doing, I’d have laughed at you.”
Miller sees patients of all ages.
“I see patients from all walks of life from the time that women start their periods all the way through menopause,” she said. “I’ll do annual exams, I do problem visits, talk about birth control, and menopausal symptoms. You name it, anything that has to do with the reproductive system, breast exams, breast lumps.”
Miller knew at an early age that she wanted a career in the medical field.
“It was in high school,” she said. “I had a careers class where we had to shadow somebody for a whole day, and I chose my cousin who was an OR manager, and I just was like, this is what I want to do.”
Miller came to work at INTEGRIS Health after a tenure at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.
She said INTEGRIS Health offered her a great opportunity.
“It was the benefits that drew me to INTEGRIS Health” she said. “My husband and I struggled with fertility and INTEGRIS Health had really good fertility benefits and they had an opening in the OR, and I had put in for it. We did two rounds of in-vitro that had failed, and we thought if we were to keep going, I would get the job at INTEGRIS Health. I did get the job, and that’s honestly what led me to be working at INTEGRIS Health.”
Miller said she enjoys working with her INTEGRIS Health family.
“I’ve really been blessed with good people,” she said. “I’ve had wonderful leadership and I’ve been placed with people who’ve always been great mentors and have been extremely supportive of everything in every facet.”
Miller tries to relay that support to building good rapport with her patients.
“I want to make sure that they feel like they are heard,” she said. “Sometimes you just need somebody to talk to, and it’s not just the physical aspect of what’s going on, it’s the mental health part of it. They can talk to me about anything.”
Miller said being an extrovert helps in communicating with her patients.
“I’ve always been an extrovert, so that really helps me out,” she said.
Giving back is also part of Miller’s DNA.
Miller and her husband are members of Oakdale Church of Christ in Edmond, and she previously served as a volunteer nurse practitioner at the Lighthouse Medical Clinic in Oklahoma City.
The clinic provides free health care services provided by volunteers that want to help those in their community. Appointments are given first come first serve at the time of the clinic. Currently, they try to see new patients on Tuesday mornings.
“There’s so many people that are underprivileged, they’re uninsured, and they need healthcare too,” she said.
Miller said she stopped volunteering at the clinic due to a busy professional and personal schedule.
She hopes to return to volunteering at the Lighthouse Medical Clinic soon.
“I want to get back to it,” she said. “I’ve just recently talked to the clinic manager, and we are trying to get a timeframe that we can do this, so that I can work on my Thursday afternoons and get back down there as a nurse practitioner.”
Miller said nursing has provided her with a variety of opportunities and experiences.
“The beautiful part about nursing is that if you don’t like what you’re doing, go do something else,” she said. “There’s something that you can find in nursing that you will absolutely love.”
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