Nurse practitioners and physician assistants are advanced healthcare practitioners with similar responsibilities, such as diagnosing illnesses and prescribing medications. However, their training and paths toward certification differ in significant ways. This blog post unpacks the key differences between NPs and PAs to help you determine which career path best aligns with your goals. What Is a Nurse Practitioner? A nurse practitioner (NP) is a licensed clinician who provides comprehensive healthcare to patients of all ages. An NP can work in virtually any healthcare setting, diagnosing patient conditions and prescribing medications. As of October 2022, nurse practitioners have full practice authority in 27 states, meaning that they can practice Read more
MHS Student & ATC, Danielle Mitterando Kanski
Danielle Mitterando Kanski has been an Athletic Trainer for 22 years. For the past 16 years, she has been employed at her alma mater, Middletown High School North in Monmouth County, New Jersey. She will be graduating this December from the Master of Health Science program at USAHS.
Return To Learn Concussion Law for Students
With her longstanding position and experience working with high school student athletes, Kanski’s capstone project for the MHS program is writing a white paper on concussion Return to Learn law, calling for laws to be put into effect to guide the return to the classroom following concussion.
She is submitting an article to the American Journal of Public Health arguing that teachers, administrators and guidance counselors are not trained in concussion management in the classroom and why they should be. Athletic personnel and medical staff in schools complete annual training in concussion management, whereas administrators and guidance counselors do not.
“Return to Learn procedures aren’t as well developed as Return to Play,” Kanski said. “With all the issues a concussion can bring, I feel teachers need to be as educated on concussion management as the medical personnel.”
Kanski feels that in a high school setting especially, it is beneficial for school staff to collaborate on students’ recovery after concussion.
“I have always kept up on the changing concussion procedures as it has changed drastically in the 25 years,” she said. “There is still lack of knowledge with parents and students and I felt this was an area that I could focus on.”
Helping Student Athletes
Kanski said her time in the MHS program has made her realize that she was a bit stuck in her ways and the program opened her eyes to more that she can provide for her student athletes. She appreciated the “fresh perspective” other students in her program brought to the table and enjoyed learning how other states handle different health policies related to athletic training.
After graduation, Kanski plans to continue reading and staying up to date on the constant changes in her field.
“I forgot how much I enjoyed reading and learning,” Kanski said.
USAHS rekindled her thirst for knowledge and she plans on keeping up with it in her free time. She’s also looking forward to a possible graduate intern from Monmouth University starting Fall 2019, which could lead to an ongoing partnership with schools in her area.