Columbia Neurosurgery's World-Class Nurse Practitioner (NP) Team

Attracting the Best and Brightest to Care for Our Patients

November 17, 2023

At Columbia Neurosurgery, our world-class physicians provide the industry's highest levels of neurosurgical care. Maintaining that standard of excellence requires a top-notch team with many interdisciplinary roles. In celebration of "Nurse Practitioner Week," our department explores how the function of the NP has expanded and increasingly specialized over the years, elevating care for all.

The Increased Specialization of the NP

According to Columbia University's School of Nursing, "With the increasing scope of clinical scholarship in nursing and the growth of scientific knowledge in the discipline, doctoral level education is recommended for independent practice." Here at Columbia Neurosurgery, many of our NPs hold Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degrees in addition to their extensive specialized training in disorders of the brain and spine. They diagnose and manage patients, assist in procedures, and provide holistic care for all our patients and their families. The versatility of our NPs is further evident in their ability to care for the patient from the outpatient preoperative environment, through an inpatient stay, and to the home. Despite neurosurgery's complex and time-sensitive nature, our NPs remain a comforting, familiar face to our patients. 

Some NP Spotlights Across Our Divisions

Our team is pleased to celebrate all our NPs, and we've selected a few to spotlight.

  • Michael Lamb, NP, works closely with Dr. Neil Feldstein, Chief of our Pediatric Neurosurgery Division. Michael has served in this field for years, having seen patients pre-operatively and post-operatively. As a father, Michael profoundly understands the importance of building relationships with the patients' families. Says Michael, "On the inpatient side of things, you often don't have an opportunity to see kids once they've recovered and rehabilitated. Now I'm gaining an understanding of neuropathology and the nuances of neurosurgery."
  • Anna Czarny works closely with Dr. Brett Youngerman in our Functional Division. Anna says, "I enjoy being part of the full recovery journey, especially seeing the profound impact deep brain stimulators can make on a person's quality of life." Anna became interested in Neurosurgery due to the complexities of illness and ever-evolving new technologies and surgical options."
  • Jordana Velazco partners with Dr. Guy McKhann, who serves as Co-Chief for both Functional and Neuro-Oncology. Jordana says, "The best part of my job is developing a close provider-patient relationship and using my skills and knowledge to support and care for our patients."
  • Paytyn Leveto collaborates alongside Dr. Andrew Chan in our Spine Division. When transitioning from the Neuro ICU to the Columbia Neurosurgery Spine Team, Paytyn says, "Everyone was so willing to teach; it felt like a natural transition from my previous role."

We're incredibly grateful for all the dedication and support all our NPs bring to our care here at Columbia Neurosurgery.  Thank you for helping to evolve our department through your talents, empathy and dedication to all the patients we serve.