Nurse practitioner serves prostate patients

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Amber Whitaker has traveled all over the country and all over the world—but she always knew she would end up settling down at home.

“I’ve been to Switzerland, France, Italy, Hawaii, California, New York and many islands in the Caribbean,” says Whitaker, a nurse practitioner who began working at Provision Center for Proton Therapy in March. “There’s no place like East Tennessee.”

A Jefferson County, Tenn., native, she completed undergraduate and graduate training at Carson Newman College. But she didn’t know she would end up focusing her career in oncology. However, after landing her first job out of school at Thompson Oncology Group in Morristown she discovered her passion for cancer patients.

“Initially, I thought, ‘There’s no way. I’ll just sit there and cry,’” says Whitaker. She quickly realized her misconception. “I fell in love with it right away. You get to know patients, and they get to know you. It’s challenging but rewarding.”

At Provision, Whitaker will work with Dr. Marcio Fagundes in providing care to prostate cancer patients, both during their time at Provision and in follow-up after treatment.

It’s the same type of work she did with prostate cancer patients undergoing conventional radiation treatment at Thompson, where she connected with patients during treatment and in their three-month post-treatment checkups, she says.

“Although proton therapy is new for me, treating prostate patients is not,” she says.

Whitaker wasn’t seeking a new position, but she was interested in buying her first house. After considering, and praying about, buying her first home in Morristown, she quickly learned about an opportunity at Provision. She decided to investigate. She read extensively, researched and learned from watching videos on Provision’s website. She met with various staff. She prayed some more. She now has a newly-purchased log cabin in West Knoxville and a new job with Provision.

“When I came here for my interview, I knew right away this was where God wanted me. There wasn’t a single person I encountered that didn’t just give off this great energy,” she says. “This is a new chapter. I feel like this is going to be a really, really long chapter.”

Whitaker says she loves developing relationships with patients. Her vision is to be an expert on treating prostate cancer with and helping educate the patients under her care

“You’ve got to walk through this journey with them,” she says.

Amber Whitaker, R.N., A.P.N.

Family Nurse Practitioner

  • Education: B.S. in nursing, Carson-Newman University, 2010; M.S. in nursing, Carson-Newman, 2014
  • Prior experience: Nurse practitioner, Thompson Oncology Group; R.N. University of Tennessee Medical Center
  • Favorite quote: “Working hard for something we don’t care about is called stress; working hard for something we love is called passion.”—Simon Sinek