The top nurse practitioner in Illinois is an ISU professor. Dr. Teresa Valerio will receive her 2013 Nurse Practitioner State Award of Excellence from the American Association of Nurse Practitioners in June. Dr. Valerio is an ISU faculty member but works one day a week at Student Health Services doing primary care for students and handling sleep problems. She's one of the few nationally-recognized practitioners in the area of sleep disorders.
"Some people, adults--students included--have disorders of their sleep that is not just an issue of not enough sleep. Maybe insomnia, difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep, which then can lead to sleepiness unfortunately and then in some cases can lead to motor vehicle crashes and deaths."
Valerio says sleep behavior is one of the main issues confronting college students.
"The top three factors that student's identify as negatively impacting their academic performance are stress, anxiety and sleep. Those all three are important and probably feed into each other."
The AANP honors one nurse practitioner from each state. Valerio obtained her Doctor of Nursing Practice degree in 2011 and last year became the first Nurse Practitioner to become board certified in the practice of Behavioral Sleep Medicine. Prior to joining the ISU facutly Valerio worked at OSF St. Francis Medical Center and Methodist Health Service Corporation in Peoria.
(photo credit: Illinois State University)
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