My name is Dawn Harrison. I am the Family Nurse Practitioner https://wnybloodcare.org/about/our-team/ at WNY BloodCare. I am also Board Certified through the Nurses Credentialing Center.
I initially went to college and obtained a degree in psychology with plans of becoming a psychologist. While completing the program, I later became drawn to the nursing prerequisite courses. I finished my initial degree in psychology while subsequently pursuing my nursing degree. I always wanted to be in a career that helped others and both programs built upon those abilities. I completed my 2-year nursing degree at Niagara County Community College. I went back to complete my BSN at Niagara University, while working full time as a Registered Nurse. With future aspirations of becoming a Nurse Practitioner, I went to the University of Virginia to complete my MSN in the Family Nurse Practitioner program after seven years of being an RN.
A particularly inspiring moment in my nursing career was while working on the inpatient pediatric oncology unit at Roswell Park. I would often take care of a young lady, the same age I was at the time. At the time I was in my early 20’s and recently graduated from nursing school with my BSN. We quickly bonded as she would come in frequently and be admitted to my floor. One day while admitting her to start her chemotherapy treatment, she told me that she made something for me. She reached into her bag and pulled out a 5x7 canvas picture of flowers that she had personally drawn and gave it to me. I told her that I loved her picture and gave her a hug. This simple gesture was one of the most rewarding moments of my nursing career. The picture has always been on my dresser; reminding me of her and the true meaning of why I became a nurse.
I enjoy being part of WNY BloodCare, an organization that oversees care of patients across the lifespan. This brings a closer relationship to patients and their families. My role is to be the conduit to patient care, coordinating diagnoses and treatments with physicians and our clinical team. I am also part of the medical team supporting girls and women with bleeding disorders through the S.H.E. Clinic https://wnybloodcare.org/services/she-clinic/, one of only a few in the country.
I am privileged to work with a great team which includes physicians, nurses, a social worker, physical therapists, a dietician, a genetic counselor, and a pharmacy coordinator who are essential to the wellbeing of our patients.
My priority will always remain providing quality care for my patients. The advent of new gene therapy treatments is on the horizon and will bring new possibilities. This process takes time, however, and will most likely not be seen for a few more years.
In my free time, I enjoy running and spending time with my husband and my three sons. I recently started sewing, machine embroidery, and quilting. When I have extra time, I like to make baby blankets and purses.