Sara L. Douglas, PhD, RN, associate professor, Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing, Case Western Reserve University, discusses the importance of focusing on the caregiver of a patient with cancer.
Douglas says most research has shown that caregivers are highly stressed about their new role as caregiver as well as over the outcome of their loved one. Nurses currently focus on how a patient is doing, but Douglas says there needs to be a focus on caregivers too.
Steps should be taken to incorporate the caregiver into the conversation and to ensure they are not feeling distressed. If they do feel distressed, supplemental materials should be provided.