In oncology settings, the interaction of nurses with patients is especially important since the former encounter not only physical but also emotional and psychological problems. For many patients, it becomes difficult to realize that they have cancer and start combating it, which complicates the treatment process. In this connection, adequate support should be provided to these chronically-ill patients, and oncology nurses need to explore their preferences and perceptions.
In the interaction of an oncology nurse and patient at all stages of the diagnostic and therapeutic process, communication remains the paramount functions. It includes the exchange of knowledge, ideas, and assumptions, during which diagnostics and treatment may take place (Chan, Wong, Cheung, & Lam, 2018). It is the responsibility of the nurse to make a positive impact on the psychoemotional state of the patient, offering a range of corresponding services. In modern society, consulting patients about their health status is critical. Nurses need to create a new sustainable model of the relationship between medical personnel and patients based on a high level of education, holistic care, and social acceptance. In case this is not performed, there is a threat of limited and inappropriate care. Among other negative issues, additional workload on nurses and time-consuming may be noted.
Many patients experience debilitating symptoms, while oncology nurses have too much work to discuss them. As stated by Mooney, Berry, Whisenant, and Sjoberg (2017), patient-reported outcomes (PROs) present a feasible and effective way to monitor patient condition and adjust it timely and remotely. Implemented and managed by nurses, such a strategy can essentially improve outpatient care quality and patient outcomes, taking into account the individual needs of patients with cancer. Thus, oncology nurses have a great potential to benefit patient experience and make it more comprehensive.
Chan, E. A., Wong, F., Cheung, M. Y., & Lam, W. (2018). Patients’ perceptions of their experiences with nurse-patient communication in oncology settings: A focused ethnographic study. PloS One, 13(6), 1-17.
Mooney, K., Berry, D. L., Whisenant, M., & Sjoberg, D. (2017). Improving cancer care through the patient experience: How to use patient-reported outcomes in clinical practice. American Society of Clinical Oncology Educational Book, 37, 695-704.