The cornerstone of your experience is our care team. These are the people that attend the tumor boards, schedule your treatment and get to know and understand you. Central to your care is out unparalleled nursing team,, including our nurse navigators, multidisciplinary nurses, nurse practitioners and oncology nurses. Our oncology nurses are deeply engaged in knowledge of what cancer is and understand what you confront.
We bring years of nursing experience to your treatment because our turnover is very low. Simply put, your care team takes you and your life seriously. This is more than a job. For our team, this is their life's work.
The infusion nurse in the treatment suite will review your health history and assess your physical and emotional status. The nurse will review your labs and any recent tests you have had. They will collaborate with the physician about your treatment plan. The infusion nurse will administer your chemotherapy treatment, other medications and intravenous fluids. The nurse will continue to educate you about the medications you are receiving, and identify and manage any side effects that you are having.
Oncology nurses are registered nurses who care for patients with cancer. They work as part of a multidisciplinary team, in a variety of settings, and with a variety of patients. While it is often said that nurses are the heart of health care, oncology nursing is a particularly challenging and rewarding field of nursing. The oncology nurse is with their cancer patient during your most difficult and intimate moments in life.
The oncology nurse often serves as the first line of communication for patients with cancer. Each of the medical oncologists has a primary nurse, and this person will coordinate most aspects of your care. In addition to scheduling test and lab appointments, referrals to other specialists, and confirming the availability of medications and other treatments, the primary nurse will begin your education about the treatment plan. You will learn how often you will receive treatments, and what side effects to expect. The nurse will communicate any difficulties you are having with treatment, and co-ordinate any symptom management that you need.
Many patients will also receive radiation therapy as part of your treatment plan. Just like in the infusion suite, an oncology nurse in radiation will educate you about the radiation treatment, and the side effects that you might expect. The nurse, on a regular basis, will assess your physical and emotional needs, and any side effects that you are having from the radiation, and collaborate with the radiation oncologist to manage these.
Many of the oncology nurses that you will meet are "oncology certified". This means that they elected to continue their education with additional cancer-specific knowledge and clinical expertise beyond what they learned in a basic nursing program. Board certification is voluntary and ensures qualifications, knowledge and education in a specialty area. Oncology certified nurses (OCN) have met specific eligibility and passed an exam. They must continue to have eligible hours of practice and continuing education in order to renew their certification.