Ina L Wilson has completed her Master of Science in Nursing from Indiana University School of Nursing and pursuing Post-master’s studies from Valparaiso University School of Nursing. She is a board certified Nurse Practitioner at Indiana University Health, a tertiary care academic center.
Oncology nursing is widely viewed as a rewarding and emotional challenging specialty. Oncology nurses witness terminal illness, death, physical, and emotional suffering which increases their risk of developing compassion fatigue. The purpose of this evidence-based practice (EBP) project was to increase awareness of compassion fatigue among oncology nurses by providing them with knowledge, effective coping skills, and self-care management skills. The theory of human caring was used as the theoretical framework to support this EBP project and the intervention was guided by The Iowa model of research-based practice to promote quality care. The project used a pre-test and post-test design. Compassion fatigue scores of the professional quality of life scale V (ProQOL V) were compared from the pre-intervention stage of compassion fatigue education to the post-intervention stage immediately after completion of the compassion fatigue education. Participants were recruited from a tertiary care center hospital in Marion County, Indiana. Sixteen participants (n=17) and eleven participants (n=11) completed the intervention stage of the project. Data were analyzed using the Wilcoxon signed-rank test to compare mean pre- and post-test compassion fatigue scores. Results demonstrated a statistically significant decrease in compassion fatigue scores following the intervention (z-score=-2.27, p<0.05). The findings of this evidence-based practice project suggest that implementation of compassion fatigue education can decrease the severity of compassion fatigue experienced by oncology nurses working on a bone marrow and stem cell transplant unit.
Siri B Talseth completed her specialist training as an oncology nurse in 2008 and is at present the Head of Unit for Palliative Care and Chemotherapy Treatment, Cancer Department, More og Romsdal Hospital Trust, Molde, Norway. She is always looking for ways to develop her department that benefits both patients and her staff.
Our unit at Molde Hospital is part of a larger cancer department consisting of four hospitals. We have a total of 6.4% oncology/palliative nurses and 1.5 % physician positions shared by an oncologist and an anesthetist. The positions are divided into outpatient and a palliative team. Our daily tasks are to treat patients in the form of chemotherapy, managing side effects, provide counseling, palliative care, teaching and support for both patients and their careers. In 2014 we started the development of patient logistics and workflow routines because our patient number increased steadily, while we had the same number of resources. In 2014 we had 3781 patients’ consultations, which increased to 4701 in 2015. Up to 10 patients had to wait on average 2-7 hours to receive chemotherapy, which is a waste of valuable time for both the patients and the hospital. In 2014, day one of treatment consisted of patient consultation, blood-tests, approval of treatment and delivery from pharmacy. The aim of the new routines was less time in hospital for the patient and to provide a better workflow for the cancer nurses. By doing small changes to our/others routines we have managed to decrease the time patients have to spend in hospital by up-to 5 hours. In conclusion, our work routines have freed up time for both the patients and nurses. We have received feedback from the laboratory, pharmacy and oncologists that the new routines are brilliant and have also made their day more efficient and easier to plan.