Infection Prevention for Oncology Nurses

March 25, 2021

Regardless of care setting, oncology nurses must be vigilant about creating a safe environment for and educating patients about the importance of infection prevention. Patients with cancer are at increased risk for viral, bacterial, and fungal infections, but the extent depends on cancer type and treatment.

ONS’s evidence-based practice recommendations provide strategies ( for practitioners to use in patients who are at increased risk for infection, particularly those receiving hematopoietic cell transplantation. Patients who are receiving systemic treatments should be evaluated for infection risk before each treatment. Organizations should support that work via documentation that makes timely and consistent evaluations that allow for comparison over time. Nurses should provide patient education on the symptoms of infection (, especially for those with neutropenia, and the importance of reporting them promptly:

General Infection Prevention

The following general infection prevention recommendations ( apply to all settings:

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