Our certified bariatric coordinator, Dana Bradley, RN, CBN, is uniquely qualified to serve in her role. She is a certified bariatric nurse and has helped shape our bariatric program. And she’s also had bariatric surgery.
Since Bradley had gastric band surgery in November 2006, she has lost 103 pounds.
“I’m able to talk to patients about both sides of the story,” says Bradley. “As a former staff nurse in the bariatric unit, I am able to discuss the medical side of surgery. As a patient, I am able to talk about the emotional and more personal aspects.”
In her role as bariatric coordinator, Bradley works as a liaison between Blount Memorial Hospital and our practice. She coordinates and teaches classes and leads support groups, and she maintains personal contact with patients during their waiting period before surgery.
“I have a knack for remembering names, birthdays and surgery dates,” says Bradley. “I love working with the patients, and I think it means a lot to them that I remember those kinds of details.”
Bradley says that she finds her job very rewarding, particularly because she gets to see the end results of surgery. “As a staff nurse, I only saw the front end of treatment; I never saw the results. Now, I get to see first-hand the success that patients achieve.”
“I remember one bariatric patient in particular,” said Bradley. “He was 71 years old, in a wheelchair and suffering from lots of medical problems. Before he became too sick to work, he had been an LPN. He felt so much better following surgery that he decided to go back to nursing school to become an RN. He plans to work in bariatric nursing.”
Referring to her job, Bradley says, “I know I’m where I’m supposed to be,” and I couldn’t agree more.