Dana-Farber nurses present research and evidence-based studies at 2024 Oncology Nursing Society Congress

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Two nurses recognized with Extraordinary Healer honors

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute nurse scientists and clinicians are presenting key studies and projects at the 49th annual Oncology Nursing Society (ONS) Congress on April 24-28, 2024, in Washington, D.C.

ONS Congress is the largest, most comprehensive oncology nursing conference in the country, featuring nurse-led presentations that highlight the intersection of clinical knowledge, research, direct patient care, and advocacy resulting in innovation.

Two nurses from Dana-Farber are honorees at the ONS Congress award presentation for the 2024 Extraordinary Healer, which recognizes oncology nurses whose compassion and expertise improve the lives of their patients. Charge nurse Jessica McDade, BSN, RN, OCN, is one of three finalists; and Ludmila Svoboda, MSN, RN, OCN, nurse director of the Cancer Care Equity Program, placed in the Top 20. The winner of the Extraordinary Healer award, which is presented by CURE Media Group and Oncology Nursing News, will be announced during ONS Congress.

"We're thrilled that CURE and Oncology Nursing News are honoring two of our nurses at the same time so many of our staff are sharing their expertise, research, and evidence-based practice projects at ONS Congress," said Anne Gross, PhD, RN, FAAN, Senior Vice President for Patient Care Services and Chief Nursing Officer, Dana-Farber. "Their vast and varied contributions are sparking positive change with immediate impact on patient outcomes."

Notable presentations by Dana-Farber nurses and researchers include:

Precision Health Oncology: Focus on post-treatment comorbid diabetes

Marilyn Hammer, PhD, DC, RN, FAAN, of Dana-Farber will explore the impact of diabetes and transient malglycemic events among individuals who have completed primary therapy for cancer. Using a precision health model with multiple health determinants, symptom science studies that included biomarkers associated with risks for a higher symptom burden and poor quality of life will be discussed. Hammer, director of the Phyllis F. Cantor Center for Research in Nursing and Patient Care Services, will also evaluate research methods and measures in the context of implications for future research and the translation of findings into clinical practice.

Implementing high-fidelity simulation to enhance bispecific antibody-induced cytokine release syndrome education

The emergence of bispecific antibodies (BsAbs) in the ambulatory oncology setting has created nursing education needs to identify, assess, and treat patients experiencing cytokine release syndrome (CRS). Lauren McGovern, MSN, RN, OCN, NPD-BC, of Dana-Farber is presenting a high-fidelity simulation scenario depicting a patient with suspected BsAbs-induced CRS, which was developed and implemented with staff nurses who routinely treat patients receiving BsAbs medications in the ambulatory oncology setting. High-fidelity simulation was an effective and innovative educational activity to enhance nurses' confidence and knowledge in caring for a patient at risk for CRS and should be incorporated into oncology nursing education to potentially improve patient outcomes.

Referral to exercise program in genitourinary oncology patients

Exercise can decrease anxiety, depression, and cancer-related fatigue while increasing quality of life and physical functioning. Yet despite evidence-based research indicating that exercise is safe and effective for cancer diagnoses (including genitourinary cancer), a lack of time, education, and resources are barriers to referrals. Jenny Spencer, RN, BSN, OCN, of Dana-Farber is presenting findings that show Oncology Nurse Navigators (ONN) may provide an effective pathway to aid in the translation of exercise oncology research through patient education, proper assessment, and referrals to appropriate professionals.

Nursing care of a hemodialysis patient undergoing CAR T-cell therapy

Previously, patients with end stage renal disease (ESRD) requiring hemodialysis (HD) were unable to receive Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR) T-Cells due to limited data on safety and efficacy as this patient population was excluded from clinical trials (due to increased risk of toxicity from the lymphodepleting chemotherapy and CAR T-cell therapy toxicity). Linda Ramsdell, MSN, FNP-BC, OCN, of Dana-Farber will present a study suggesting that the creation of nursing workflows would enable patients with ESRD receiving HD to successfully receive CAR T-cell therapy by continually monitoring for toxicity and collaborating with the multidisciplinary team to ensure patient safety. With real-world experience in treating toxicity, this presentation shows ways to potentially expand treatment options in populations with unmet needs.

For all ONS Congress-related media inquiries, contact Cindy Cantrell at Cindy_Cantrell@dfci.harvard.edu or 781-953-5000.

Follow the meeting live on X using the hashtag #ONSCongress and follow Dana-Farber News on X at @DanaFarberNews.

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