Once a Mayfield patient, now she cares for them

New nurse practitioner in the Northern Kentucky office

Brittany Riley can relate to the patients that come into the Northern Kentucky offices of Mayfield Brain & Spine – because she was once a Mayfield patient too.

Brittany Riley, NP"I always wanted to be a nurse," she says. "I'm someone who has always wanted to take care of people."

Back in 2014, Dr. Christopher McPherson removed a cyst from her brain. At one point, she feared being diagnosed with a degenerative disease, so she was relieved that it could be successfully removed.

Pivot to last fall, when Riley had been working as a family nurse practitioner in her hometown of Cold Spring, and an NP position opened up with Mayfield. It just seemed natural.

"I used to say the perfect job for me would be Dr. McPherson's NP," Riley says. "So, when I saw the job with Mayfield, it just seemed like the right opportunity."

Riley starts every day at St. Elizabeth Healthcare, usually in the Edgewood hospital but sometimes in the Florence or Fort Thomas locations. She rounds with all of the Mayfield patients, as many as 20 per day. The patients are either awaiting procedures from one of Mayfield's three neurosurgeons in the NKY office – Dr. Steven Bailey, Dr. Tann Nichols and Dr. Brad Skidmore – or they are recovering.

About Brittany Riley:

  • Started at Mayfield: 2021
  • Education: Bachelor of Science, Nursing, Eastern Kentucky University, 2011; Master of Science, Nursing, University of Cincinnati, 2017
  • Areas of expertise: advanced practice provider for patients with spine disorders (herniated discs, back pain, trauma) and brain disorders (tumors, aneurysms, head injury); orders testing and interprets imaging; patient education; postoperative follow up

Her relationships with providers at St. Elizabeth only enhance the partnership and benefit patients, she says.

"It just provides a continuity of care," Riley says. "Three of the patients I saw today in the hospital were post-ops. They get to see a familiar face, someone they have seen before. I think it enhances the patient experience."

Three days a week, Riley finishes her day in the clinic at Mayfield's Crestview Hills office. She's often the first provider a patient will see, evaluating the best diagnosis and treatment. It's a role that has expanded Mayfield's service to patients. In partnership with experienced fellow nurse practitioner Scott Basham, who has been at Mayfield since 2001, they form a team of advanced practice providers who work with patients to find the right diagnosis and treatment, while assisting Mayfield neurosurgeons both in and out of the hospital.

Always taking care of people

Riley is born-and-bred Northern Kentucky. She hasn't strayed far from her Cold Spring roots – Bishop Brossart High School, Eastern Kentucky University and a master's degree in nursing at the University of Cincinnati.

She has worked as a family nurse practitioner, most recently at the Little Clinic in Cold Spring.

As a child, Riley would visit her grandmother in a nursing home and often end up passing out lunches or playing game with the residents.

"I always wanted to be a nurse," she says. "I'm someone who has always wanted to take care of people."