Welcome Becky Altman, Nurse Practitioner
In October we welcomed Nurse Practitioner Becky Altman to our clinical staff at Mazzoni Center Family & Community Medicine at 809 Locust Street. Becky comes to us with several years’ experience focusing on women’s and family health, as well as HIV care, at area clinics including Planned Parenthood.
While she’s relatively new to our full-time staff, Becky explains that Mazzoni has long held a place in her heart. “This has been my dream job forever, since I was a student and did rotations here,” she says.
As for what drew her to working at Mazzoni, it was a variety of factors. “For one, the population that is served here is very near and dear to my heart,” she says. “And I love transgender medicine, I love HIV medicine. They’re just very satisfying.”
“This is social justice medicine to me,” Becky says.
Becky was first introduced to us several years ago through friends in her West Philly community. “This is kind of where everyone I knew goes for healthcare,” she explains.
She was a student in the Family Nurse Practitioner program at the University of Pennsylvania, when she met Mazzoni’s Clinical Operations Manager Dane Menkin, CRNP, who came to speak to one of her classes.
“One of my friends in the women’s health program had been Dane’s student, and I knew she had a really great experience at Mazzoni,” Becky says. “So I was extra motivated to work with him.”
She arranged to do a few rotations at Mazzoni during her FNP program, where she had the chance to work side by side with Dane and the other clinicians on our staff. Her experiences as a student here would prove significant when she graduated and began working as a full-time provider herself.
As a family nurse practitioner Becky worked with patients of all ages, covering everything from preventive care to chronic disease management, but a lot of her focus was on HIV care.
“I feel like Dane trained me really well, to the point where I was the lone HIV provider at my last job, and the only provider that would do trans medicine as well,” she says.
While she enjoyed the work at other clinics, she always kept an eye out for the chance to return to Mazzoni, and when the full-time position opened up at our family practice, she jumped at the chance.
“It felt really good to come here and to not be ‘by myself’,” she explains. “And to be in this really great, collaborative atmosphere that I remember as a student, and that has definitely carried on now that I work here.”
Dane himself has high praise for Becky's "honest and forthright" rapport with patients. "She brings a skill set with her in treating HIV positive and medically complex patients," he says, adding that "Her knowledge about the LGBT community and the unique healthcare needs makes her a true asset to our clinical staff."
Teamwork is a theme that comes up frequently in describing Becky’s day-to-day work at the health center. In addition to her fellow clinicians and the two “amazing” nurses on staff, she notes the benefit of having a behavioral health consultant embedded in the primary care setting. “And this wonderful army of case managers that you can just go to for help,” she says. “All these things make it a very special place to work.”
“I’ve worked in a lot of clinics, and I would say the level of professionalism and kindness here definitely stands out,” she says.