Meet Ritter Center’s new Family Nurse Practitioner, Alec Bradbury!
Meet Ritter Center’s new Family Nurse Practitioner, Alec Bradbury.
It was in middle school when a close friend was diagnosed with pediatric cancer of the bone in his right leg that Ritter Center’s Alec Bradbury, Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP), first became interested in medicine and health care. His friend’s recovery process involved many visits to the physical therapist. Alec sometimes went along on these appointments and saw how integral the physical therapists, doctors and nurses were to his friend’s recovery. The support of those medical professionals drew Alec into the field of health care.
“Best of all, I’m happy to report that my friend is doing really well now. He endured a lot of hardship along the way, but with extensive support and an inspirational attitude, he is now pursuing his dream of becoming a lawyer,” shared Alec.
“I’ve always been drawn to the patient care aspect of medicine and, initially, I thought physical therapy was the career I wanted to pursue to provide that interpersonal care. Thus, I spent four years as a physical therapy aide gaining invaluable experience in the world of rehabilitative medicine, but after graduating from college and learning more about the role of the family nurse practitioner, I fell in love with what it was about in the end,” recalled Alec.
It was the holistic approach to medicine and the concept of caring for the whole person that really drew Alec into the field.
“I particularly like this idea of caring for the individual’s full span of health needs: mental, sexual, spiritual and physical. It’s a fascinating approach to medicine. That’s why I shifted to pursuing becoming an FNP. Thus, after graduating from UC Davis and completing my pre-requisite courses at community college, I attended Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN where I got my RN license and ultimately my Master’s in nursing and FNP license,” said Alec.
The flexible structure of Vanderbilt’s nursing program allowed Alec to complete his courses and do his clinical rotations right here in the Bay Area. Spending time in the clinic in Marin Health Primary Care as well as SF General gave Alec the chance to realize how much he enjoyed working with underserved populations.
“Working with people experiencing homelessness and individuals challenged by mental illness at Ritter Center has been significantly rewarding. I like the opportunity to talk to them every week and hear how they are doing. Honestly, supporting them on this journey extends beyond treating the symptoms. I can truly be an advocate. It is why I went into the field. Utilizing all of the tools I was given in nursing school can help me to address all of the issues my patients are grappling with, and I am excited to see these patients and treat them,” shared Alec.
“Ritter Center aligns with my values, and I am fortunate for the tremendous experience I am gaining as a new provider both on the Ritter campus and in the street medicine van. This is such a unique opportunity to meet people where they are right now at this moment in time and help them in any way I can to enhance the continuity of care. The street medicine van helps tackle the transportation aspect for those who can’t come to Ritter Center, and this is a major part of how Ritter Center’s values align with my own personal and professional values,” continued Alec.
“We don’t know people’s backgrounds and what they have been dealing with because we are all born into different situations and into different bodies. Recently, I assisted a patient who couldn’t read or write, and pondering how someone could have been deprived of that basic education really drove home the fact that not everyone is blessed with the same opportunities or support system growing up as you or myself.
“I hope that our work at Ritter Center helps to break down the myths around the issues of people experiencing homelessness, especially those that involve a frame of reference that someone didn’t make ‘good decisions’ when in reality we know nothing about their background. It’s important to treat everyone as an equal and have compassion for one another.”
A bit more about Alec! Alec was born and raised in Oakland, California. He attended college at UC Davis where he got a BS in Neurobiology, Physiology, and Behavior and he graduated Vanderbilt University’s Nursing School in Nashville, Tennessee with an MSN in Family Practice. He likes photography, exercising, hiking, reading, traveling, socializing, and Wordle.
Welcome Alec – we are excited that you are a part of the Ritter Center team!