"I see a person in my patient and I want to be the provider they can trust, someone who sees them beyond their illnesses."
Nurse Practitioner Michelle 'Mitzi' Alikpala treats patients at high-risk for surgical cardiology interventions. She does alternative, less invasive procedures.
Some procedures include Left Atrial Appendage Occlusion using a watchman device, Patent Foramen Ovale and Atrial Septal Defect closures as well as heart valve procedures such as Mitral Clips and TAVRs.
She was an Intensive Care Unit team lead registered nurse for 10 years before she became a cardiology nurse practitioner.
"Since I was a kid, I knew right away that I wanted to be in the medicine world." Alikpala said. "It is more than being someone's doctor. For me, it is a blessing being able to be there for a patient in their biggest time of need, and be able to help them get back on their feet— either literally or metaphorically."
Alikpala is a board-certified nurse practitioner and was recently named Marshfield Clinic Health System Structural Heart Coordinator.
"As an Advanced Practice Clinician, I am given that opportunity to make a difference in someone's life, especially in their most crucial moment, which in the end, re-intensifies my love for what I do," she said.
Alikpala enjoys not just treating patients, but getting to know them as well. "The way I treat my patient is how I want myself or my family members to be treated if the situation was reversed," she said.
Alikpala completed graduate school at Lewis University in Romeoville, Illinois in 2016.
Outside work, Alikpala has two dogs and enjoys skydiving, scuba diving, bungee jumping and traveling.