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Nurse Practitioner Registered

Arlington, TX
March 06, 2018

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Ann M. Birka



Extensive experience as a Registered Nurse, Clinical Nurse Specialist and an Acute Care Nurse Practitioner for Surgical Service with an expanded knowledge base and advanced clinical decision making in the management of perioperative and acutely ill patients and their families. Ms. Birka provides comprehensive health assessments, diagnoses, and treatment of individuals with potential or actual acute health needs. In collaboration with the attending physician, she managed the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, supervised members of the Cardiovascular Thoracic Surgery (CVTS) staff including the Nurse Coordinator, the Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants. Ms. Birka manages the Thoracic Surgery intensive care unit, the step-down Telemetry unit, first assists in surgery, admits and discharges patients, manages floor patients, implements discharge planning, evaluates patients in the ER, manages outpatient post-op patients with complications, and manages the Cardiothoracic Surgery clinic. Clinical Assistant Professor participates in part-time lecturing and lab instruction for Nurse Practitioner courses at the University of Texas at Arlington.


Acute Care Nurse Practitioner-Board Certified, ACNP-BC Texas License Number: AP110853

Registered Nurse, RN Texas License Number: 647526

Critical Care Registered Nurse, CCRN

Registered Nurse First Assistant Certificate, RNFA

Certified Nurse Operating Room, CNOR

Advanced Cardiac Life Support, ACLS

Basic Life Support, BLS


University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, Texas

Post-Masters Certificate, Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, 2000

University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, Texas

Registered Nurse First Assistant Certificate, 2005

University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah

Master of Science, Physiological Nursing- Clinical Nurse Specialist, 1990

College of St. Teresa, Winona & Rochester, Minnesota (Mayo Clinic), 1981

Skill Highlights

First assist in surgery: tissue/organ handling, providing exposure, instrumentation, saphenous vein graft harvesting (open & endoscopic), orthopedic and spine surgeries, hemostasis, sternal and leg wound closure by sternal wires and suturing of subcutaneous and subcuticular tissue.

First assist with Robotic surgery: Thoracic robotic lung resection surgery, Urology robotic prostatectomy and nephrectomy surgeries.

Insertion of pleural chest tubes

Insertion of pleurex drainage systems

Insertion of internal jugular, subclavian, and femoral central venous catheters

Insertion of radial and femoral arterial catheters

Endotracheal intubation



Removal of pleural and mediastinal chest tubes, intraaortic balloon pump catheters, epicardial pacer wires, pericardial drainage tubes, Jackson-Pratt drainage tubes, On Q pleural analgesia catheters, pleurex catheters, and pleural empyema tubes.

Debridement of wounds

Incision and drainage of infected wounds

Employment & Professional Experience

Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (ACNP)

Cardiothoracic Surgery 2001-2018

Completes hospital admissions, transfers and discharges.

Performs a complete history and physical examination, ordering pertinent diagnostic tests to complete the health assessment.

Interprets information to determine health status and identifies differential diagnosis.

Formulates a plan of care in collaboration with physicians, other healthcare team members and the patient/family.

First assistant in surgery. (Cardiothoracic, Urology, Orthopedic and Spine)

Orders and manages therapeutic regiments as outlined by established protocols and pathways.

Utilizes prescriptive authority based on established protocols, pathways and/or practice guidelines.

Consultation and referral.

Facilitates patient and family education in individual or group settings utilizing appropriate teaching materials and adult learning strategies.

Evaluates achievement of individual patient goals, tracks patient variances individually and in aggregate for a population, and recommends actions to improve patient progress toward goals.

Provides counseling and clinical intervention based on cardiovascular expertise in various settings along the continuum of care.

Participates in discharge, cardiac/pulmonary rehabilitation, and follow-up planning.

Performs procedures with demonstrated competency.

Provides services in outpatient and inpatient settings promoting a continuity of care.

Participates in research activities in compliance with the organization’s investigational review board and regulatory agencies.

Triages patient calls, schedules surgery cases and clinic appointments, and follow-up of patient activities, as necessary.

Facilitates health maintenance and promotions.

Maintains accountability for accurate and timely data collection and assists in analyzing and interpreting outcome findings using support services, as necessary.

Documentation of care using accepted medical records including medical history and physical, procedure notes, progress notes, discharge summaries, and other appropriate medical records.

Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS)

Thoracic ICU, Surgical ICU, PACU, OR 1990-1996

Expert clinician, educator, consultant, and researcher thereby increasing the quality and cost effectiveness of outcomes for patients, nurses, and the organization.

Provided expert consultation, training and education for all critical care nursing staff.

Developed and implemented numerous programs/projects that led to improvements in health care delivery systems.

Integrated nursing practice, which focuses on assisting patients and their families in the prevention or resolution of illness, with medical diagnosis and treatment of disease, injury or disability across the care continuum.

Staff Registered Nurse/Charge Nurse (RN)

TICU, SICU, CCU, MICU, Telemetry Unit, Psychiatry, Vascular Surgery, Orthopedic Surgery, Neuro Surgery, ENT Surgery, Urology Surgery, Plastic Surgery, & General Surgery

1981-1989, 1997-2000

Awards & Honors

Recipient of “The Great 100 Nurses”, Honored for Excellence in the Art and Science of Nursing, Texas Nurses Association Districts 3 & 4 and the Dallas-Fort Worth Hospital Council Nurse Executives Forum, 1995

Recipient of Student Award, Outstanding Clinical Performance in Advanced Practicum – Acute Care, University of Texas at Arlington, Fall Semester 2000 Recipient of Student Award, Outstanding Clinical Performance in Psychiatric Management, University of Texas at Arlington, Fall Semester 1999

Recipient of numerous “Special Contribution Awards”, VA Health Care System

1. Courtesy in Action Award, 9/2007

2. Special Advancement for Achievement, 5/2002

3. Special Service Award, 9/2000

4. Special Service Award, 7/2000

5. Special Service Award, 9/1999

6. Special Advancement for Performance, 8/1998

7. Special Service Award, 2/1996

8. Special Advancement for Performance, 1/1994

9. Special Advancement for Achievement, 5/1990

10. Special Advancement for Performance, 10/1989

11. Special Contribution Award, 5/1987

Academic & Professional Activities

Served adjunct faculty appointment with the University of Texas at Arlington, Texas

Participated in part-time lecturing and lab instruction for 5313 and 5314 Clinical Procedures, 5435 and 5436 Acute Care Nursing I and II, 5316 Advanced

Health Assessment, 5631 Advanced Clinical Nursing Practicum, 5354 and 5355 Acute Care Nursing I and II, and 5350 Role of Nurse in Advanced Practice

courses at the University of Texas at Arlington, Summer 2015 to Present

Trained numerous Nurse Practitioners, Physician’s Assistants and medical students

Appointed Education Chairman of the hospital wide Nurse Practitioner Council organizing ANCC approved continuing education programs throughout the year.

Served as Chairman of the service wide Nurse Executive Quality Improvement Committee

Actively participated as member of the Nursing Research Committee

Developed and implemented the original Interdisciplinary Cardiac Rehabilitation Teaching program, and submitted a comprehensive Cardiac Rehabilitation Program proposal with a resource management plan that integrates budget, human resources, and capital expenditures.

Developed, coordinated and taught the 4-week Critical Care Course for MICU/CCU, and SICU/TICU nurses quarterly.

In collaboration with the Medical Director, served as Hospital ACLS coordinator, offering ACLS Instructor and Provider certification courses for 6 years.

Participated in numerous educational offering for colleagues, patients, families and the community (examples: in-services, biannual Women and Heart Disease Conferences, annual Critical Care Symposiums, pre & post-operative teaching, and Arlington ISD)


Available upon request.

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