Our Oncology Nurses

Oncology Nurses

The level of compassion our oncology nurses bring to your care is matched only by their high level of experience and skill. Because they understand that everyone is unique, they offer personalized care. Their goal is to help make your experience as positive as possible.

Tina Harrison RN, BSN, OCN – Head Nurse
A three-year breast cancer survivor, Tina kept on working during her fight, “During my time battling breast cancer I would have my IV treatment running and sit at my desk calling patients, continuing with my daily job. I feel I was able to offer patients a unique understanding as they battled their own cancer.” Tina brings a strong background to her work at Oncology Associates with two years in Brain Trauma Rehab and nine years in bone marrow transplant and oncology. She’s been with Oncology Associates for five years. Tina’s backed by a strong family. The Glenwood, Iowa native is the mother of three, and she’s got one grandchild. She sites her mother, an LPN, as one of her major influences. The thing that she most wants everyone to know about her role at Oncology Associates is this, “I am devoted to the daily care of patients with cancer, providing care and compassion at all times. My patients come first and I will always do what I can to help them.” It’s a sentiment echoed time and again by all of our doctors, nurses and staff.
Leanne Johnson RN, OCN – Assistant Head Nurse
An Omaha native with nursing in her genes, Leanne said that she’s always wanted to be a nurse. Following in her mother’s and older sister’s footsteps, Leanne has worked in the medical field since 1985, with over 10 years at Oncology Associates. Leanne is open and sincere, and believes that one of the best things about Oncology Associates is that “we are a small facility, so we can really get to know each of our patients”. She thinks of herself as a fairly typical sort at home — married with two grown children, a Nebraska fan with a yellow lab that she enjoys playing with. At OA, we see Leanne as a compassionate, highly experienced professional, who you can depend on to help make your experience as positive as possible.
Jeanne Dale RN, OCN – Holdridge Clinic Coordinator Jeanne has been an oncology nurse for over 30 years, and has served in a variety of capacities at Oncology Associates, including Head Nurse for over 20 years. She says the patients continually teach her more than she has to give and bless her life with their courage, faith and support of each other. In her first career, Jeanne earned the distinguished honor of “Airman of the Year” with her US Air Force command. This is no minor accomplishment – and she continues to provide that level of excellence here. She says it’s her primary goal to “make her cancer patients’ experience as easy and uncomplicated as possible.”
Mary Helwig RN
“Sing like no one is listening, dance like no one is watching, live every day to the fullest.” That’s Mary’s motto. This mother of six has been married for over 28 years “to the same man”, she notes with a grin. She lives on a farm and loves being a mom and growing pumpkins. Obviously family is a central theme in Mary’s life. What she wants people to know is that the Oncology Associates practice and staff does not just treat the patient, but also cares about and supports the family as well. With 20 plus years of Oncology and Surgical Nursing behind her, Mary continues to be passionate about her work. She loves meeting the patients and gaining inspiration from their stories.
Michael Thompson RN
Not many people would say their professional inspiration is a clown – especially in the medical field. But for Michael Thompson, the MD and social activist Patch Adams, provides an ideal balance between science and compassionate healing. Another inspiration for Michael is family. “I have had seven family members with cancer and those experiences have fueled my passion for oncology,” he recalls. Michael’s other passions include fast cars, hunting and great food and wine. He was raised in Iowa, but was born in Italy, where his mother instilled an appreciation for fine cuisine. “She taught me to cook with enthusiasm and creativity,” he says, which is something he brings to the clinic every day.
Debbie Thurlby – Staff RN – Blair Clinic Coordinator
If a volcano erupts, you can count on Debbie for help. She learned how to be self-reliant when she was in the Philippines and Mt. Pinatubo erupted. Even without any major natural disasters, patients can count on Debbie, who got into nursing because she felt she’d been very blessed (surviving volcanoes!) and thought it was time to give back. She loves to make her patients laugh. “If they’re laughing, they’re not thinking about cancer,” she says. And she loves it when her patients get their last chemo treatment, being part of the experience makes her heart glad. When she’s not dealing with volcanoes, Debbie enjoys quilting, reading, traveling and talking about her family.
Lora Salvo Oncology RN Lora Salvo RN
Having once worked as an ER nurse, patients can rely on this Millard native to keep the calm. In fact, Lora says that getting her patients to smile, laugh and relax is one of her greatest satisfactions. When it comes to calming any anxiety, Lora might be too good! She once helped a patient cope with a stressful situation by having them visualize themselves on a warm beach, with the water slowly inching up, taking them out to the ocean. The visual helped the patient, until the water reached chest level, at which point the patient yelled, “I can’t swim!” An empty nester with two grown children (really?), Lora’s best friend is her husband and she loves her dog Hamish, action packed movies (no romances!) and anything Scottish (except maybe Haggis).
Marie Hansen Staff RN Oncology Associates Marie Hansen, Staff RN
This Denison, Iowa native realized at a young age that she wanted to get into nursing and help people, after working in nursing home in high school. A decision she never regretted, as Marie counts the patients she’s had the pleasure of working with as some of the biggest influences in her life. After graduating with a BSN from the College of St. Mary, she worked at Children’s Hospital and then hit the open road, working as a travel nurse, doing stints in Chicago, San Antonio and throughout California. But she couldn’t get Omaha out of her system and has now found a home at Oncology Associates, where she says her biggest satisfaction is helping her patients and being there for them through their cancer journey. Marie enjoys spending time with her two dogs, who she claims are adorable, yet naughty. And she’s also a huge Kansas City Royals fan (even before they were good!). Something you might not guess about her? She roots for the Hawkeye’s…not the Huskers.
Jennifer Gregalunas RN Jennifer Gregalunas, RN
Barbara (Barb) Gremm – Medical Assistant
What you see, is what you get with Barb, whose greatest satisfaction at OA is working for her patients, getting to know them and hear their stories. Not wanting a desk job, Barb knew early on that she wanted a job that had a purpose for good in her life. She became a medical assistant, and she’s brought good to many in her 30 years of work. An Omaha original, Barb started out in gastrointestinal before switching over to oncology. When asked what she’d like her patients to know about OA, she responds “we care, we really do!” When Barb’s not caring for her patients, you’ll find her spending time with her husband. Looking at her, you’d never guess that she has three boys in their twenties.She also loves boating or being around the water. One patient of Barb’s always loved the blue jolly ranchers, so every week, on her appointment day, Barb would bring two of them to her so that she didn’t have to fish for them in the candy jars. Now that’s devotion!
Annette Donley – Medical Assistant
It’s all about caring for people for this self-proclaimed “Biker Chick”, who gets her biggest satisfaction by providing comfort, compassion and friendship to her patients. Married for over 27 years, she survived raising four boys and is now a grandmother, hard to believe, of three girls and three boys. Heartwarming story? No pun intended, but Annette has procured organs for donation!
Kim Stuart Medical Assistant Oncology Kim Stuart– Medical Assistant MA
This Omaha native is a natural care-giver, whose greatest satisfaction is making sure her patients are always comfortable and helping them feel good, “even though this is probably the hardest thing they will go through in their lives.” Kim says her grandmother was a big reason why she decided to get into the medical field, as her grandmother always wanted to be a nurse, but that life and raising 9 kids got in the way. And Kim helped fulfill the dream when she became a CMA. Kim enjoys spending time with her husband (30 years married!), her three sons, all in their twenties, and her two dogs. She might not admit if you ask her, but she’s a closet “Judge Judy” watcher.
Erin Horvath CNA
Erin brings a level of care and consideration to her work that stems from her inspiration – her patients. “I love getting to know the patients and families,” she says, “I learn something new from each one.” Wife, mother of two grown children and keeper of three(!) dogs, Erin is an experienced nurses’ assistant who has worked at Nebraska Orthopedic Hospital and Methodist Hospital.
Lynn Maca, Certified Medical Assistant
It’s really all about family for Lynn. Not only does this mother of five enjoy spending time with her family and friends, but she considers her patients and the staff at Oncology Associates as extended family. Her biggest satisfaction on the job is getting to know her patients and helping people. And she’s been doing it with gusto as a Certified Medical Assistant for over 12 years! When she’s not busy caring for others, chances are good that you’ll find Lynn working in her garden.
Deb Voges Oncology CNA Deb Voges, Certified Medical Assistant
It’s all about keeping patients happy, says Deb, who we can thank for emigrating from the United Kingdom to become a naturalized citizen of the US. After 25 years of working in various administrative positions, Deb returned to college to become a surgical technician, but soon found that she was missing her true calling: Helping patients. Wanting to be there for patients to provide them with support and reassurance before and after surgery, she’s found her calling in oncology, where she’s helping patients feel less anxious, more comfortable and happy. When she’s not busy making the world a happier place, Deb enjoys working out, home projects and spending time with her husband, her daughter, who is in college, and Monte, her 14 year old Bichon.
Kelli Giles, Certified Medical Assistant Kelli Giles, Certified Medical Assistant
Compassionate and caring are two words to describe Kelli, who got into the medical field because she always wanted to help people. And her biggest satisfaction of her job is getting to know her patients and their families. Kelli actually got into oncology because she had three family members who had cancer. When she’s not assisting her patients, Kelli enjoys spending time with her family and attending all of her nephew and niece’s sporting events. One thing you wouldn’t know about her? Don’t offer her any milk for her cereal. She loves her cereal dry!
Tammy Bazemore CNA Tammy Bazemore, CNA
You wouldn’t guess that this is Tammy’s first medical job. With her caring manner, she’s a natural. And having a big heart helps! She had previously worked in various production related jobs but decided to go back to school to purse a degree in a medical related field. Her sister had suffered a stroke and Tammy knew that she always wanted to work in medicine, where she could help others and make a difference. Her biggest satisfaction of her work is helping patients feel comfortable, happy, as well as getting to know them and hear their stories. In her spare time, Tammy enjoys spending time with her family and friends, where you’ll likely to catch her boating or doing a little horseback riding. She has 4 boys, 2 girls and a three year old Springer spaniel named Mrs. Bow Jangles. And she’s also a grandmother of 6 (hard to believe!).

 

Facebook Twitter Youtube