We are so excited to introduce you to our newest Smarty Mom, Kim Bivens. You might recognize Kim – she might have even taken care of your children! She’s been a nurse practitioner at Atrium Health Levine Children’s Arboretum Pediatrics for 18 years. She recently won Atrium Health’s top patient satisfaction award for the entire system. That’s big. We recently caught up with Kim to talk about winning the award and what it all means, and of course we had to ask her for some parenting tips. Not only is she surrounded by children in her profession, but she’s also the mother of two grown daughters. We thank Kim for taking the time to talk to us AND for taking such good care of so many of our children. We are very lucky to have her in the QC.
Smarties, meet Kim Bivens!
Smarty Mom: Kim Bivens
Married to: Mark, 33 years
Children: Emma 27 and Hannah 26. I am one of those mothers who went through infertility treatments. Five days after adopting Emma, we found out that I was pregnant. Our sweet girls are 7 months apart! We are doubly blessed!
Hometown: Columbiana, Ohio
Years in Charlotte: 18 years
Alma Mater: The Ohio State University
Occupation: Pediatric Nurse Practitioner
Give us a little “day in the life” in your role as nurse practitioner at Arboretum Pediatrics.
I work part-time and cover afternoons/early evenings here at the office, so I enjoy my mornings playing tennis and meeting friends for lunch. In the afternoons, I tackle the pediatric issues of each day, which can be different. In the summers, I spend time performing well-child checks and sports physicals while winters tend to consist of sick visits.
Tell us about the differences between a nurse practitioner and a physician.
Nurse practitioners (NP) have a strong background in nursing. Most NPs typically have worked as bedside nurses for a number of years prior to obtaining their master’s or doctoral degrees in their field of specialty.
What is the best part of your job?
The best part of the job is the people!! I love working with the children, adolescents, and their parents. Having worked at Arboretum Pediatrics for 18 years, I have watched children grow up and develop into beautiful adults. It is fun to care for the children and their families as they go through the many stages of childhood, adolescence, and early adulthood.
What are some ways you try to show your commitment to your patients?
I show commitment to my patients by letting them know that we are here for them no matter what the obstacles and that our door is always open for those life challenges.
You recently won the Teal Acorn Award for Patient Satisfaction in the Atrium Health Care System. Tell us about the award.
The Teal Acorn Award is an award given to the advanced care provider (nurse practitioners or physician assistants) within the entire Atrium Health system with the highest patient satisfaction for the year.
What was your reaction when you heard that you won?
I was totally surprised and honored just to be nominated for this award out of 2500 people. I was ecstatic when my name was announced. I was fortunate to be supported that evening by some of the wonderful providers that I work with. What a great celebration!
What does this type of award mean to you as a healthcare provider?
The Teal Acorn Award means everything to me. Through the years, I have treated children in many capacities including pulmonology (lungs), cardiology (heart), trauma and now general pediatrics, and I have enjoyed the many experiences and people I have met along the way. The award authenticates my 40-year career in pediatrics.
What are some things you’ve learned over the course of your career as it relates to parenting?
Every child is different. Everything is not going to go as planned. Laughing is key. The days are long but the years are short, so enjoy the ride!
Your daughter also works for Levine Children’s Hospital. How do you think your career as a healthcare provider influenced her decision to also go into the field?
Both of my girls chose a career in healthcare. Emma is a physical therapist, working here in the Charlotte area. Hannah is a nurse working at Levine Children’s Hospital on the pediatric hematology-oncology unit. I am not sure that I influenced them so much, but they have witnessed my love of my career. It was important to me that my girls pick a career that invoked passion. I think they both always felt supported in their decisions. Fortunately, they both love their careers!
What makes Arboretum Pediatrics great?
I have worked at Arboretum Pediatrics for 18 years. This has always been a special place with great providers and teammates. As many people are aware, our office went through big changes last year which were very difficult internally, however we did what we do best, by putting our patients and families first. Because of this, we continue to have a strong pediatric presence in South Charlotte.
Now for the Smarty lightning round…
Best place for a date night? Bricktops in SouthPark
Best place for drinks and apps after work? The Wine Vintner, The Lodge
Favorite place to shop for yourself? SouthPark Mall
Best place to vacation? The Caribbean / Ocean Isle Beach
Best part of raising a family in Charlotte? Schools / social life / active lifestyle
Best part of being an empty nester? My house is clean!!!
If you could go back to give yourself advice as a new mom, what would you say? Be patient and trust your instincts.