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VCHS Nurse Practitioner Johanna Spencer Completes RNFA Program

ORD, Neb. – Johanna Spencer, APRN- NP, FNP-BC, completed the APRN RNFA program (Advanced Practice Registered Nurse Registered Nurse First Assistant) a two year course through the National Institute of First Assisting. In the operating room, the first assistant is responsible for directly assisting the surgeon. First assistants often provide retraction at the incision site, help control bleeding, close the incision at the end of surgery and apply dressings to surgical wounds.

The APRN RNFA program includes three phases: Online educational portion (48 hours), 6-Day SutureStar Workshop and a surgical internship (140 hours). Johanna traveled to Denver in 2018 to participate in the SutureStar Workshop which consisted of 54 hours of hands on practice learning a multitude of surgical skills while performing many different types of surgery simulations.

While APRNs are not required to complete the surgical internship, Johanna chose to assist our VCHS specialists with multiple surgeries over the past year, including Dr. Seip (General Surgery), Dr. Tyler Adam (OB-GYN), and Dr. Lesiak (Orthopedics). Johanna said, “I am very appreciative of their willingness to teach and look forward to continuing to grow in this role.”

VCHS is pleased to enhance patient care needs in our surgical department. 

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Pictured (L-R): Christopher Seip, MD; Johanna Spencer, APRN- NP, FNP-BC; after finishing a laparoscopic cholecystectomy.