How Do Nurses Give Real Hope to Cancer Patients?
Nurses directly provide essential care to patients with cancer. Most cancer patients have more interactions with nurses than with any other member of their health care teams. When you see that your patients with cancer are struggling both physically and mentally with their diagnoses, use these four strategies to give your patients real hope for the future.
Listening to Patients’ Concerns
One of the most important actions you can take is listening to the concerns of your patients. Be a friendly ear to a patient’s worries and fears. One by one, address those worries and fears. Countering a patient’s fears with a sensible and real statement will help your patients to feel more secure and comfortable with their treatment plans.
Explaining Treatment Prognosis
With the medical knowledge you have as a nurse, you can provide your patients with key pieces of information. Let them know, realistically, the survival rate for their type of cancer. Work closely with the radiologists that are familiar with the patient. Make sure their X-rays and MRI scans have been thoroughly evaluated. Offer more information as desired by the patient, such as the success and survival rates for single treatment methods versus combined treatment methods. Provide guidance on how mood, nutrition and social support will boost their chances at surviving cancer.
Look Into RN to MSN Online Programs
Advanced education is the key to success in the modern healthcare system. Your career as a nurse could be advanced by investigating RN to MSN online programs. With an MSN degree, you could work as a nurse practitioner, offering more direct patient care services. An MSN in nursing provides you with additional skills to practice as an oncology nurse. With your education and experience, you will be able to provide cancer patients with essential care.
Connecting Patients with Cancer Support Groups
While your patient is in the hospital, provide information about local support groups. There are support groups based on type of cancer, patient age and general prognosis. If one of the groups meets in the hospital, offer to take the patient to the meeting so he or she can see what it is all about. The hospital chaplain may also be able to offer resources to the patient and his or her family.
A cancer diagnosis does not mean that death is imminent. With your compassion, knowledge and experience, you can individually work with each of your patients and provide them with a sense of hope. From developing new patient care skills to connecting patients with essential social support, you can play a huge role in the lives of your patients. Each patient you care for provides you with new opportunities.