Riverwood Healthcare Center is pleased to introduce two new members of the oncology care team for cancer patients. They include Nurse Practitioner Jenny Diederich and Oncology Care Coordinator Katie Gunderson.
“We are pleased to welcome Jenny and Katie to our oncology team,” said Dan Schletty, director of ambulatory services at Riverwood. “They both bring excellent experience in caring for cancer patients with a high degree of skill and compassion.”
Working closely with Dr. Aby Philip, oncologist, Diederich will oversee infusion care for patients receiving chemotherapy, provide support to prevent and treat side effects of cancer and treatment-related symptoms, and monitor patients for cancer recurrence.
Diederich earned her master’s degree in Nursing from Maryville University in Missouri and bachelor’s degree in nursing from Minnesota State University in Mankato. She completed clinical training in family practice and oncology in Pequot Lakes.
With 13 years of nursing experience, Diederich has been caring for oncology patients in the Brainerd area for the past five years.
“When you care for cancer patients you see them a lot and you make strong connections, like family,” Diederich said. “In this field, there are always new treatments so it’s very interesting and rewarding work.”
A Minnesota native, Diederich lives with her husband, Nick, and two children, Piper and Parker, in Breezy Point. She enjoys a range of outdoor activities with her family, including boating, fishing, camping, hiking and traveling.
After working as a registered nurse at Riverwood for nine years, Katie Gunderson has moved into a new role as oncology nurse navigator, working closely with Dr. Philip and Diederich. In this role, Gunderson will serve as an advocate and patient educator, offering one-to-one support from the time of diagnosis through treatment and recovery.
“I enjoy getting to know cancer patients and making sure they feel confident in the care we are providing,” Gunderson said. “It is an honor to be a part of such a significant event in patients’ lives.”
Gunderson has worked with cancer patients in Riverwood’s infusion center for the past seven years. She obtained her associate’s degree in nursing from Central Lakes College in Brainerd and has been an oncology-certified nurse for two years.
Gunderson is the mother of four children with one teenager still living at home. She and her husband, Tim, live on a small hobby farm with goats and ducks.