How Does ONS Support Nurses Who Care for Older Adults With Cancer?
By bringing together gero-oncology experts from the ONS membership, staff, and leadership, the ONS geriatric oncology group is identifying gaps in geriatric oncology nursing research and care and connecting ONS members with available resources targeting this vulnerable population. Adult patients with cancer—aged 65 and older—already make up a majority of patients that oncology nurses see. Despite the population’s prevalence throughout cancer institutions and clinics, many nurses are not acutely familiar with the specialized care required to successfully help them navigate their treatment.
Support and Empower At-Home Caregivers of Patients With Cancer
Finding comfort among loved ones at home can be conducive to healing in all of its dimensions for patients with cancer. For patients in home care, many aspects of treatment and day-to-day medical care are done by loved ones or family members. In the United States, nearly 4.6 million at-home caregivers are tending to patients with cancer. Although many at-home caregivers embrace the responsibility, managing successful oncology care can be a complex burden for family members—many of whom are likely unprepared for the stressors of cancer care.
Laughing in the Face of Cancer: ONS Member Shares Mother’s Comical Reflections on Being a Patient
American author Kurt Vonnegut once wrote, “Laughter and tears are both responses to frustration and exhaustion. . . . I myself prefer to laugh, since there is less cleaning up to do afterward.” Humor has the ability to sooth and heal, and humor often makes grim situations feel brighter and less daunting. Moments affixed with tragedy, grief, loss, and terror can often soften in time, allowing for understanding, acceptance, and sometimes even laughter.
Helping Patients Live Beyond Their Cancer Diagnosis
For more than 14 million Americans, a cancer diagnosis is something they live with everyday. While some may just be embarking on their cancer journey, many others have completed their trek and are living beyond their cancer diagnosis. For those patients, they experienced the joy and relief that came with finally finishing their treatments. However, there often can be uncertainty when patients consider their lives after cancer. Sometimes, many are left wondering, “What happens next?”
The Case of the Dietary Dilemma
Cicely, who is being treated for stage III colon cancer, has lost seven pounds between her first and second cycles of chemotherapy. She admits to Julie, an outpatient oncology nurse, that her nausea is well controlled but she just doesn’t feel like cooking meals anymore. What Would you do?