Doctor of Nursing Practice spotlight: Meet Kim Blanton
In celebration of the 20th anniversary of the University of Kentucky’s Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program – the first of its kind in the country – we are highlighting some of our DNP graduates who serve as nurse leaders at UK HealthCare.
Kim Blanton, DNP, MHA, RN, NEA-BC
Kim Blanton, a native of Salyersville, Ky., is a 2020 graduate of UK’s Doctor of Nursing Practice program. She is a board-certified nursing executive and is the chief nursing officer for UK Albert B. Chandler Hospital.
Blanton began her career in 1998 serving as a critical care nurse in the UK Healthcare Neuro Intensive Care Unit. Throughout her career, she has held multiple nursing leadership roles, including serving as the enterprise nursing operations director for the cardiovascular service line, interventional services and infection prevention and control.
What influenced your decision to work in health care?
I started out thinking I wanted to be a lawyer but during my senior year of high school my best friend was hospitalized, and I stayed with her every night to keep her spirits up. I saw how nurses interacted with her and really wanted to get into some type of career I could serve people the way they did my friend.
What keeps you motivated in your career?
The people. I have a passion for helping people. Whether that is the patient, visitors or staff. It is an amazing feeling to help those in need.
Do you have a favorite memory from your time at UK HealthCare?
Believe it or not, my favorite memory comes from the height of COVID. During the pandemic, we set up a “war room” to keep up with all the demands around supplies, resource information and protection equipment. The infection control team partnered with the supply chain and set up camp in a room to offer 24-7 assistance. It was a great time of collaboration and support to one another. That is the best part of working at UK, the partnerships and collaboration.