An expert in health care administration, education, clinical nursing and long-term care, Phyllis M. Brighton, RN, MSHCSA, CLNC, is the daughter of a registered nurse mother and an orthopedic surgeon father. She began her professional career as the nursing manager in the specialty surgical units at Presbyterian-St. Luke’s Medical Center in Denver, eventually moving up the ranks to administrator of the hospital as well as Kremmling Memorial Hospital, now known as Middle Park Health. She then served as associate director of ambulatory and clinical services at AMI Rocky Mountain Healthcare Systems in Denver and vice president of the U.S. Nursing Corp. in Denver. Ms. Brighton retired as a nurse administrator in 2017. In addition to this tenure, she served in various long-term care/rehab nursing positions, was an MDS consultant for Marriott Senior Living faculties, and an MDS/RAI training coordinator for the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environmental Services from 2011 to 2015.
Prior to the start of her career, Ms. Brighton pursued a formal education at the University of Colorado Boulder, joining the Tri Delta Sorority and earning a Bachelor of Science in Nursing in 1969. She then attended the College of St. Francis in Joliet, Illinois, where she attained a Master of Science in health care services administration in 1984. Additionally, Ms. Brighton is a certified legal nurse consultant through Brighton Medical-Legal Consulting since 2015.
The developer of a travel nursing program, Ms. Brighton was nominated for a Nightingale Award for Excellence in Nursing, which was developed in 2001 out of a desire to celebrate and elevate the nursing profession. Fairness is the basis of everything she did, as well as to do no harm. Happily retired, Ms. Brighton is the proud mother of two wonderful children, Heather May Mitchell and Richard Aaron Mitchell.
Possessing a strong sense of humor, Ms. Brighton is brutally honest about everything. Today, it upsets her that health care is not “health care” anymore; she sits back and looks at what health care has turned into, with it actually being directed and told what to do by politicians, insurance companies and pharmaceutical companies. She finds it very depressing and not what health care is about. She believes medicine is to cure and to cut out, and health care nursing is to support and heal. Ms. Brighton’s motto is “Physicians don’t heal; nurses do.”