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February Spotlight on Clare Ironside
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Spotlight on Clare Ironside


Clare Ironside is a nurse practitioner (NP) working in Palliative Medicine at the Albuquerque Veterans Administration Hospital. Born and raised in Albuquerque, NM, she started her nursing career by completing her ADN in 2003. Following her ADN, Clare obtained her BSN in 2004 from the University of New Mexico (UNM). She completed her master’s degree in nursing administration at UNM in 2012 and became an NP by earning a post-master’s certificate from the University of St. Francis in 2015.

Clare has always been interested in geriatrics and end of life care. When she started as a nursing intern in the Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU) at UNM Hospital her experience there shaped the way she viewed aggressive medical treatment. Although she learned a lot from her time in MICU, she knew she wanted to be a part of a different kind of medical care, one that focused on comfort and less invasive or aggressive treatment. When she returned to school to become an NP, she knew that working in palliative and hospice care was where her heart was.

When asked what she likes most about her job, Clare reports that she enjoys being able to take the time to get to know her patients, to bear witness to their life and all the joy and suffering that goes with it. The interdisciplinary group of professionals she works with have a great mission and she really enjoys the cohesive group of NPs with whom she works.

Her hobbies include spending time with her family, which she also rates as a priority in her career and life balance. Clare is a member of the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine (AAHPM) and the New Mexico Nurse Practitioner Council (NMNPC). Currently her goals include obtaining her certification in Advanced Certified Hospice and Palliative Nursing and being more involved with NMNPC.

If Clare were to give advice to a new NP, she would want to impress upon them that “Although New Mexico has full practice authority, we have a long hard road of advocating for our profession and everyone that needs access to care.” She would encourage new NPs to get involved in any way possible and to continue to advance NPs on the local and national level. In the future she would like to see NPs on equal ground with their colleagues, especially in terms of reimbursement and the ability to order services and medication at the state and national levels.


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Newsletter 2019 Q1

Click below to read the new issue, featuring A Hot Mess.





NPs & MDs in Low-Income & Rural Health Care








Read the recent JAMA article about this issue here.







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