Support Patients' Treatment Decisions During COVID-19
MADELAINE KUIPER, MSN, RN, OCN | August 09, 2020
Patients with breast cancer may be apprehensive to come into the clinic for treatment amidst the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. However, others may prefer seeing their treatment team in person.
Ultimately, providers should give patients an active role in choosing what kind of treatment they receive (when possible), and help support them through the process, says Madelaine Kuiper, NP, a nurse practitioner at UCLA Health.
Patients is where we're getting most of the direction from. I have some patients that are very reluctant to come into the clinic, or into the infusion center, despite us having the best screening mechanisms or preventative mechanisms that we can have. You know, if it comes down to really a choice about inpatient or infusion treatment or not, I will go with whatever the patient wants to do, and if that means taking our roles of supporting them, and getting them through that, even if that [means] having to talk to them every couple of days to see how they're doing.
However, we are trying to reassure [them] that if you want to come into the clinic to the infusion room, it's okay we are we have [protective] mechanisms in place. And some patients do prefer that because they feel that they're getting seen that they're being assessed appropriately. And, you know, obviously we are mindful as well as if their white counts are declining, we are using earlier rather than later is a growth factor[based treatments] to try and help support these patients.