Kristina Skarbinski, MSN, FNP-BC

Practice Specialty:
Motility/Neurointestinal Disorders, Gastroenterology

Practice Location:
Massachusetts General Hospital 
Boston, MA 

Describe why you chose to become an NP.

I became a nurse practitioner because I love medicine but I also love nursing and I can be a part of both. I wanted to help people achieve their health goals and to inspire them.

Describe a situation in which you made a meaningful difference in the lives of one of your patients.

I try to make a difference in every one of my patient's lives. I know what it is like to not want to go to a healthcare appointment or to dread an appointment. I know what anxiety related to your health or a loved one's health is like...always wondering what is going to happen. I wanted to change that. Every time I see my patients I often say, “We are a team. We are in this together. I am the navigator and can give you direction but you are the driver, the decision maker.” This really resonates with them.

What do you think is the best part of being a Nurse Practitioner?

The best part of being a nurse practitioner is being able to make a difference in many ways

Describe your greatest practice challenge in the current healthcare environment.

In Massachusetts, our practice is limited. The limitations we have in this state makes it difficult to participate in the patient's care the way I want to. There are a lot of patients that need care and cannot access that care. Allowing Nurse Practitioners to practice to their full extent of their license can be one of the ways we can improve access in a really big way.

What is the best advice you have been given or would give to a student entering the profession?

You will never know everything and if you ever feel like you do then you need to find another profession. Being in the healthcare field means that you can be great at what you do but every day you have the opportunity to be even better. Own your strengths and your weaknesses. Understand that every day you work in this profession is a privilege to be a part of something bigger and to change someone's life.