On the eve of Make a Difference Day, I think it’s fitting to talk about how each of us can do just that–make a difference. Whether in our family, our neighborhood, our workplace, or a larger stage, we all have the ability to make a positive impact. I try to make a difference by educating my colleagues in healthcare about neurosurgery so that they can make a difference in the health of their patients. I have done this throughout my career and will continue to do it as long as I have something relevant to share.

This month, I presented a lecture on the neurological assessment to nurses at the Trauma the Challenge conference at Renown Health, and co-presented a seminar on the post-operative care of craniotomy patients to nurses at Saint Mary’s Regional Medical Center. As a neurosurgical nurse, this information is second nature to me. For trauma nurses who must recognize and treat an incredible variety of symptoms under pressure, this was essential training on assessing patients with head trauma. For orthopedic nurses entrusted with the care of patients who have undergone brain surgery, being well-informed could be the difference between a successful recovery and an unsatisfactory one.

We all have great gifts to share. You don’t have to wait until Make a Difference Day to make a difference in your community.

 Wren Ballard, MSN, APN, CCRN