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NURSES WEEK 2020: Jamila Smith-Young trains pediatric nursing students

Jamila Smith-Young has long loved the idea of being a nurse and as that love affair blossomed, she wanted to do more in the field.

“I love working with patients,” she said. “But I also love training nurse practitioners. I find it quite rewarding.”

Jamila Smith-Young (Courtesy photo)

Smith-Young is a nurse practitioner in the Department of Pediatric Endocrinology for UT Le Bonheur Pediatric Specialists. She is also an assistant professor for the College of Nursing at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center. Board certified as a pediatric acute care nurse practitioner, she recently, obtained her Doctor of Nursing Practice degree in 2018.

What, exactly is a nurse practitioner?

A nurse practitioner is an advanced practice registered nurse and mid-level practitioner. Nurse practitioners (NP) are trained to assess patient needs, order and interpret diagnostic and laboratory tests, diagnose disease and  prescribe treatment plans.

NP training covers basic disease prevention, coordination of care and health promotion, but does not provide the depth of expertise needed to recognize more complex conditions. According to the American Association of Nurse Practitioners, NPs are educated at the graduate level to provide “primary, acute, chronic, and specialty care to patients of all ages,” depending on their field of practice.

“I studied for my doctorate because I can do research, teach and still be involved in hands-on patient care,” Smith-Young said.

She earned a bachelor’s of science degree in microbiology from the University of  Tennessee-Knoxville; a B.S. in Nursing from the Baptist College of Health Sciences; a Master’s degree in Public Health; a M.S. in Nursing, and a Doctor of Nursing Practice.

Jamila Smith-Young (right) and an associate are suited for duty. (Courtesy photo)

Smith-Young is the face of LeBonheur Children’s Hospital at local events and some public speaking venues.

Licensed in Tennessee as an RN and an NP, Smith-Young is also board certified as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner-Acute Care and in Pediatric Advanced Life Support.

Her many honors include: Memphis’ Finest Professional Award Recipient, 2017; Sigma Theta Tau International Honors Society of Nursing, and The International Nurses Association 2019 Top Nurses Honoree, Memphis, TN.

Smith-Young is the wife of Paul Young, director of the Division of Housing and Community Development for the city of Memphis.

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