Top Nurse: Jamie Breininger translates experience to exceptional care

Breininger was awarded the practice award
Top Nurse: Jamie Breininger translates experience to exceptional care
Ruthie Hauge

Jamie Breininger wears a pair of bracelets every day that remind her of two patients, both military veterans, whom she has taken care of for six years, and one of them she sees every Monday for his immune-modifying chemotherapy.

At home, she keeps a shelf with cards and notes from former patients.

“I am not doing anything necessarily special for them. I’m just being a good nurse,” says Breininger, a charge nurse at SSM Health Dean Medical Group in Sun Prairie.

Breininger sees patients with different diagnoses and illnesses on a daily basis, and says she tries to provide them with quality care. She says she treats each of her patients like family.

That could be why some new patients ask that she remain their nurse for follow-up care. Breininger has about 30 patients who specifically ask for her to help them with their health care needs.

On top of her work in Sun Prairie, Breininger works once or twice a week at a clinic in Deerfield as a charge nurse, some weekends at West and East Urgent Care and a night shift at a nursing home in Columbus — all while raising two children.

Breininger also is part of the emergency response and security response teams in Sun Prairie. While the clinic does not provide urgent care, Breininger says many patients walk in with high-acuity needs.

Emergency medicine has always interested Breininger, and she hopes to someday become a flight nurse. She completed an EMT program in April and is seeking to join an ambulance service as well.

“Emergency medicine interests me because you have at your disposal a few things to stabilize that patient,” Breininger says. “I’m able to assess the situation really quickly and figure out what I need and what to do.”

As a charge nurse, Breininger teaches new procedures to fellow nurses. She says she wouldn’t be able to do her job without the help of others.

“The nurse motto should really be ‘See one. Do one. Teach one.’ And that’s what I try to do,” Breininger says. “See a procedure done. Then you learn it and then you do it with the person you’re teaching to make sure they know what they’re doing and they can do it successfully.”

Providing great patient care is one of the most important things for Breininger. She says patients usually know what they need and what problems they’re having, but nurses need to listen and be willing to ask more questions.

“Primary care is a monster sometimes. We see, birth to death, all diagnoses. We catch it all. We see them all after their hospitalization,” Breininger says. “It’s a good place to be.”