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Oncology Nurses Must Keep Up-to-Date to Deliver the Best Care

MIKE HENNESSY, SR. | December 05, 2019
Because of the oncology nurse’s intimate role on the care team, patients often come to trust their nurse’s perspective, which positions the nurse as a go-to resource for all of the patient’s treatment related questions.

Whether they’re wondering about a drug’s adverse events, new treatments on the horizon, or alternative therapies, patients may expect their oncology nurse to help answer all their questions or at least point them toward the right resources. That is why it is vital nurses educate themselves on the latest insights in the rapidly changing field of oncology.

We strive to help oncology nurses with this in every issue of Oncology Nursing News®, which is why our cover story breaks down relevant information in the use of medical marijuana in oncology. We interviewed experts in this field about the realties around the controversial topic, and when it is right to recommend marijuana use to patients, and how to break the stigma associated with marijuana.

Nurses are also tasked with understanding more about oncology outside their own specialty because of an unfortunate reality: The nursing shortage creates a ripple effect across the field of oncology, cutting down nurses’ time at the bedside with their patients, sometimes compromising compassionate care. In this issue’s feature story, we focus on this adverse effect of the nursing shortage and how clinics can help address it.

It’s no secret that nurses are overburdened, so in these pages, one nurse addresses the issue of clinics forcing older nurses out of the clinic before they’re ready to retire and how clinics can instead step up to treat their employees fairly.

In their role as a resource, nurses also serve as advocates on their patients’ behalf, and can speak to issues their patients face with an insight other oncology professionals do not have. In this issue’s Voices column, you will read a nurse’s perspective on how African American women with breast cancer do not receive the same awareness and benefits that white women with breast cancer do.

Clinical Insights focuses on late-breaking studies and data from coverage at the European Society of Medical Oncology Congress 2019. Be sure to take the online quiz and earn 1 free hour of continuing education credit.

I hope you find this issue both enjoyable and informative, and as always, thanks for reading!

Mike Hennessy Sr
Chairman and CEO

Talk about this article with nurses and others in the oncology community in the General Discussions Oncology Nursing News discussion group.
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