June 2019 • Volume 12, No. 6

From the Editor

Need a break from work and stress? There’s nothing like settling in with a good summertime read, especially if you can find a cool and comfortable outdoor setting to do it in—or, if you are stuck indoors, maybe a comfy chair with a window facing out on the natural world.

In this issue we bring you our annual summer book suggestions. These books have medical leanings but are guaranteed to spring your mind loose from your day-to-day world: two historical novels and two thrillers. Also, one TV show, one movie and one podcast recommendation.

Our Student in the Spotlight is Robin Major, APRN-FNP BC, from Bourbonnais, Illinois.

Scroll down for the latest batch of RNFA jobs we’ve collected for you, as well as NIFA’s favorite links.


Julie Lancaster, Editor

Summer Book List for RNFAs

Beyond All Price

By Carolyn Poling Schriber (2010). This historical novel is based on the real-life story of Nellie M. Chase, a Union nurse during America’s Civil War. She eloped at the age of 19 with a man she later described as “a drunk, a gambler, a liar, a forger, and a thief”; she escaped from that relationship and eventually joined the Union Army. With no references and no experience except what life had taught her, she eventually developed into a skilled and compassionate nurse, equally at home managing a battlefield operating station or a 600-bed military hospital. After the war, her deep-seated need to dedicate her life to a worthy cause continued to drive her efforts until she faced an enemy more lethal than war.
Read more . . .

The Glory Cloak: A Novel of Louisa May Alcott and Clara Barton

By Patricia O’Brien (2004). From childhood, the fictitious Susan Gray and her cousin Louisa May Alcott have shared a safe, insular world that begins to evaporate with the outbreak of the Civil War. Frustrated with sewing uniforms and wrapping bandages, the two women journey to Washington, D.C.’s Union Hospital to volunteer as nurses. Nothing has prepared them for the horrors of this grueling experience. Through the Civil War and its chaotic aftermath to the apex of Louisa’s fame as the author of Little Women and Lincoln’s appointment of Clara to the job of finding and naming the war’s missing and dead, this novel is ultimately the story of friendship between two women.
Read more . . .

A Bed by the Window: A Novel of Mystery and Redemption

By M. Scott Peck (1991). Among those within the self-contained world of the Willow Glen nursing home are two extraordinary people. One is there to give care, the other to receive it. Together they form a bond of love and trust that transcends their expectations and changes their lives.

Then violence shatters Willow Glen. A murderer roams the halls, and the residents and staff must confront a truly terrifying evil.

A Bed by the Window is a psychological thriller as well as a synthesis of the author’s thinking on good and evil, spiritual growth, and the miracles worked by love. The author is M. Scott Peck, author of the huge bestseller The Road Less Traveled.
Read more . . .


The blockbuster bestseller by Robin Cook (2002) that kickstarted a new genre—the medical thriller.

They called it “minor surgery,” but Nancy Greenly, Sean Berman and a dozen others—all admitted to Boston Memorial Hospital for routine procedures—were victims of the same inexplicable, hideous tragedy on the operating table. They never woke up.

“Gripping, terrifying, fast-paced suspense.”?The New York Times

Read more . . . .


TV, Film, Podcast

M*A*S*H (1972-1983)

The staff of an Army hospital in the Korean War find that laughter is the best way to deal with their situation. This long-running TV series won 8 Golden Globes and many other awards for its memorable characters, impossible situations and laugh-out-loud humor.
Find on IMDb . .

Patch Adams (1998)

The true story of a heroic man, Hunter “Patch” Adams, played by Robin Williams. Adams was determined to become a medical doctor because he enjoyed helping people. He ventured where no doctor had ventured before, using humor and pathos.
Find on IMDb…

Good Nurse Bad Nurse

A light-hearted, fun podcast hosted by two RNs who take turns telling you two medical-related stories, one dark and mysterious and one uplifting and inspirational. They also discuss current events and hot topics related to nursing and the medical field.
Learn more…

Student Spotlight: Robin Major

photo of Robin MajorCredentials: APRN-FNP BC

Student Status: Student in NIFA’s RNFA program  

City & State Bourbounais, IL

Current Position: Orthopedic nurse practitioner

Where did you get your RN degree?
ADN, Kankakee Community College, Kankakee, IL
BSN, Olivet Nazarene University,
Bourbonnais, IL
MSN, FNP, Olivet Nazarene University,
Bourbonnais, IL

How did you come to choose perioperative nursing?
I started in an orthopedic surgery center as a pre- and post-OR RN, then started circulating there in main OR and general surgery center. I went back to school for NP so I could assist.

What is the scariest moment you’ve ever seen at the table? 
 AAA [Abdominal aortic aneurysm]—on call, 4:00 a.m., could not believe the size of the aorta.

What is one technique or RNFA trick you’ve learned from NIFA that you will use for life?
Buried knot and drain.

How do you feel having your RNFA will impact your life/career?
I am confident this will expand my career to new heights. This is what I’ve wanted to do since I started in the OR in 2010!   

Jobs Front

Click here for the RNFA job postings we’ve collected for you this month.

NIFA – Office Hours

Monday-Thursday, 8:00am – 4:00pm
Friday, 8:00am – 3:00pm

Practice Resources

Here are several of the most-in-demand sites for our students, prospective students and grads:

MD Edge Surgery News: Specialty News and Commentaries, Videos and More
RNFA Scope of Practice by State (PDF)
ACS List of Cases that Require an Assistant at Surgery, 2018 (PDF)
Perioperative Nurse Links (state nursing boards & professional associations)
APRN Nurse Links

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this newsletter are strictly those of their respective authors and do not necessarily represent the views of NIFA. NIFA does not give any express or implied warranty as to the accuracy of statements made by our contributors and does not accept any liability for error or omission. It is the responsibility of all perioperative personnel to work within and adhere to their facility bylaws and individual scope of practice.

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