When Michaela Beaver graduated from the University of Iowa with a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree in 2014, she thought she was headed for a career in an emergency department; however, after about two years in a Sheldon, Iowa, ER, she noticed an alarming trend: access to mental health care was substantially lacking in Northwest Iowa.
So, Beaver left the ER to pursue a career in primary care. She enrolled in the College of Nursing’s doctorate certificate program and is currently pursuing a Psychiatric and Mental Health NP certificate while she works at the United Community Health Center in Storm Lake, Iowa.
“This clinic is a hidden gem in the community. Storm Lake is a very culturally diverse area and we offer a myriad of services to our patients,” said Beaver. “We offer programs that help the underserved and underinsured patients afford health care services and medications.”
By increasing access to mental health care services in the community health center, Beaver believes area emergency departments will benefit by experiencing a decrease in the number of patients seeking psychiatric and mental health services from the ER.
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