What Is An Oncology Nurse?
Hematology/Oncology Nurses, frequently abbreviated as Heme/Onc Nurses, are individuals who work with patient groups through diagnosis, treatment, and remission from solid and bloodborne cancers.
How to Become an Oncology Nurse
The most effective method of locating open internal employment at local hospitals is to conduct an online search. New graduate nurses must complete an internship program that includes both didactic instruction and hands-on experience working alongside a nurse-preceptor as part of an interdisciplinary team.
Nurses with experience in a different specialty will have received similar training. Training can be adjusted to their didactic and practical requirements.
What Education Do Oncology Nurses Need?
While a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree is preferred for Oncology Nursing positions, nurses with an Associate’s Degree in Nursing are able to apply as well. Specializing in oncology and cancer care needs more coursework and clinical training; also, there are additional continuing education courses and contact hours focused on various parts of the oncology specialty.
Are there any required certifications or credentials?
After some time working as a Heme/Onc nurse, the nurse becomes eligible to sit for exams and earn certification in the specialty. The Oncology Certified Nurse (OCN) examination requires 1000 hours of oncology RN experience, one year as an RN, and ten contact hours in oncology. The certification is valid for four years and must then be renewed.
Earning the ONS/ONCC Chemotherapy Biotherapy Certificate is an excellent approach for nurses who administer chemotherapy to exhibit their knowledge and commitment to nursing. Eligibility requires at least one year of chemotherapy administration on a monthly basis, and this certification provides 15 contact hours.
Oncology Nurses Work in What Locations?
Since the development of advanced cancer treatment, mid-sized to large hospital campuses have frequently included an oncology team to handle patient diagnoses and treatment plans. Patients with specific or rare types of cancer may travel to famous hospitals and teaching facilities for new treatments; these facilities attract nurses who feel called to the cutting edge of cancer care.
What Is the Role of an Oncology Nurse?
Hematology/oncology nurses, abbreviated Heme/Onc, provide both curative and palliative care for all types of cancer and blood problems. The nurse’s role is to assess and provide relevant interventions swiftly. The Heme/Onc nurse is able to deal with a wide range of emotions throughout the day and appreciates the challenge of caring for both critically ill and stable patient groups. Chemotherapy administration and monitoring for side effects are both prevalent. The position is defined by collaboration with the interdisciplinary team to design a plan of care.
What Are the Oncology Nurse’s Roles and Responsibilities?
- Assist cancer patients who are experiencing acute or chronic illness as a result of cancer or aggravating circumstances.
- Monitor the patient’s condition, administer medication, and treat symptoms in collaboration with the patient’s family.
- Provide educational and supportive services to patient families
- Demonstrate compassion and dignity when it comes to end-of-life care.
- Chemotherapy administration
- Manage the immediate and long-term adverse effects of chemotherapy
- Evaluate the ongoing physical, emotional, and spiritual requirements and status of cancer patients.
- Create and implement a care plan that is guided by specific objectives
- Communicates information to the patient, family, and staff using a variety of communication strategies and abilities.
- Is accountable for his or her own professional development
- Exhibits knowledge of legal issues and safety concepts
- Is a strong advocate for the patient’s needs when communicating with the interdisciplinary care team and family members.
Salary and Employment Opportunities for Oncology Nurses
Given our population’s increasing age and the notion that we live in an increasingly carcinogenic world, oncology is expected to grow at a quicker rate than national averages over the next decade or two. To satisfy this need, nurses might pursue oncology specialist work in a variety of ways.
A Heme/Onc RN’s average income is $67,197, with a countrywide range of $45,698 – $89,644. Salary ranges are subject to change based on location and skills, nursing certification, and degree level.