According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, “Nurses comprise the largest single component of hospital staff, are the primary providers of hospital patient care, and deliver most of the nation’s long-term care.” Denise Latham-Lee, Director of Clinical Services at DaVita Kidney Care, states that a common misconception about nurses is that the public doesn’t understand the different levels in this field.

(Photo Courtesy of Denise Latham-Lee)

(Photo Courtesy of Denise Latham-Lee)

Denise has a Bachelor of Science in nursing and certification in emergency nursing, and works under a division of DaVita Healthcare Partners Inc. DaVita Kidney Care is a leading provider of dialysis services in the U.S. and treats patients with chronic kidney disease and end stage renal disease. Denise has held roles as director for the emergency department, director of medical surgical nursing services, nurse manager and director for the behavioral science department; her experience and education has helped her to achieve overall success in her field.

How has your formal education helped in your field?

“Having a bachelor’s degree in nursing helped me understand the bigger picture in patient care. The ultimate goal for a nurse – indeed, any hands-on medical professional – is to create a better patient experience and I believe my formal education has helped me understand all that goes into creating that experience.”

How does your education play into your current role?

“In dialysis, it is critical to understand the role that a patient’s dialysis access method plays in their health. The best dialysis access method reduces infections, minimizes hospitalizations and provides a patient with a better quality of life, and thus a better patient experience. My education enhanced my ability to convey to dialysis patients – collectively among the most vulnerable in health care – the ways we can help them live higher quality lives.”

What advice can you give others looking to go into nursing?

“A potential nursing student must research nursing programs to determine the best program to suit their need. There are many opportunities and paths a nurse can take. Be prepared to study hard, display compassion, and always be open to new learning. Nursing is a very rewarding career.”

Sara Lugardo is a professional writer out of Chicago, Illinois. She has a bachelor’s in communication and is currently working on her master’s. Her work can be found on

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