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St. Luke's nurse recognized as Nurse of the Year

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The Iowa Affiliate of the Wound, Ostomy, and Continence Nurses Society recently announced Bonnie Berkemier, BSN, RN, CWOCN of UnityPoint Health – St. Luke’s in Sioux City as their 2016 Nurse of the Year award recipient.

Berkemier, an enterostomal therapy nurse at St. Luke’s, graduated from Sioux City’s Mercy School of Nursing in 1977. In 2007, Berkemier completed her BSN from Briar Cliff University and achieved certifications in Wound, Ostomy, and Continence in 2008.

She was nominated by not just one but five of her colleagues and is described by a coworker as “extremely proficient, dedicated, motivated, and evidence-based driven while collaborating with the intraprofessional team providing the highest patient care possible.”

The role of a wound, ostomy and continence (WOC) nurse is diverse and complex. Nurses in this field are constantly working to provide preventative, stabilizing, and rehabilitative care to their patients. WOC nurses focus their skills on improving quality of life for people with needs involving wounds, ostomy, and continence.

The WOC Nurses Society supports its members by providing educational, clinical and research opportunities to advance their knowledge of the field. The Iowa Affiliate of the WOC Nurses Society has more than 100 active members across the state who serve voluntarily in the organization.

In her last nine years at St. Luke’s, Berkemier has chaired multiple wound and pressure ulcer teams and has worked tirelessly to educate staff regarding wound and pressure ulcer prevention. Berkemier has also worked on designing a wound care documentation piece and assisted in developing a skin care protocol for neonatal patients, among many other projects that have greatly benefitted St. Luke’s and its patients.

Berkemier also shares her knowledge by serving as a mentor to local nursing students.

In addition to her work at St. Luke’s, Berkemier volunteers at her church and other service organizations.

Another nominator said, “She is continually giving back to her family, community, and profession.”

St. Luke’s is pleased to have Bonnie Berkemier as a member of their team!