Editor's Note: The following is a release from Adventist Bolingbrook Hospital.
Nurses over the country are learning how well cares for its oncology patients, thanks to an article published in an oncology medical journal by nurse Jeannine Arias, clinical director of breast and oncology services.
In Patient Navigation: Blending Imaging and Oncology in Breast Cancer, Arias evaluated the hospital’s self-supporting patient navigation program since its implementation and discovered results met or surpassed national benchmarks. The article appeared in the February 2012 issue of the Journal of Oncology Navigation & Survivorship, the official journal of the Academy of Oncology Nurse Navigators.
Patient navigators serve as liaisons between the patient and her physician and offer emotional support. They assist with appointment scheduling; work with patients to make sure they understand their diagnoses, treatment options and plan of care; and connect patients with resources, including emotional and social resources, transportation to appointments, or financial services.
According to Arias’ team’s research, navigation services coupled with timely treatment and follow-up are an effective way to increase patient satisfaction and patient volume.
“When patients are happy, they tell their friends,” Arias said.
Since publication, Arias has received at least one call per day from nurses requesting additional information.
“Nurses from all over the nation were asking about our processes,” Arias said. “We learned as much from them as they did from us.”
In 2011, Arias, along with nurses from Adventist Hinsdale Hospital, Adventist GlenOaks Hospital and Adventist La Grange Memorial Hospital, presented their findings on patient navigation at the 21st Annual National Interdisciplinary Breast Center Conference in Los Angeles. While there, representatives from several publications approached Arias and expressed interested in printing her findings. Arias decided to submit to two of them. The second article is pending.
“Publication in this prestigious medical journal is a testimony for the quality of care our nurses provide to cancer patients,” said Jolene Albaugh, vice president/chief nursing officer, Adventist Bolingbrook Hospital.