April 2013 VOL 4, NO 2

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Letters from Lillie

Letters From Lillie

Lillie D. Shockney, RN, BS, MAS, ONN-CG 

Dear Reader,

On behalf of myself and the wonderful AONN staff and Leadership Council that I have the privilege of working with, we hope that you are enjoying the new features and benefits we have been launching for you through the AONN website. Our goal is to continue to develop more sophisicated and easy-to-navigate website content that provides our members more knowledge and networking opportunities, as well as the ability to access resources of benefit to you and to your patients. (And if you haven’t yet taken a look at the redesigned website, carve out a few minutes and take a look. It is worth your time.)

We have set up our first VIGs—virtual interest groups—initially focusing on the larger volume organ site cancers. There will be many more to follow, as well as VIGs for those working in the area of community outreach, survivorship care, and other phases of a patient’s continuum of care. I’d like to personally hear from you regarding what types of VIGs you feel would be of specific benefit to you within the type of navigation role you serve. My e-mail is shockli@jhmi.edu.

We are continuing to build the resource database for you that will truly be a wealth of information at your fingertips to provide solutions to the barriers you experience that prevent cancer patients from receiving the cancer treatment they need and deserve.

Now, on to this issue of JONS. We have 3 topics of focus for you to read about. There is an article on cancer rehabilitation that is of particular importance, since it will likely impact your role as a navigator. We learned a lot by surveying the AONN membership about their knowledge and understanding of cancer rehabilitation. The Commission on Cancer has incorporated into its accreditation standards specific requirements regarding this aspect of cancer care. Those who serve as navigators are in the perfect clinical position to improve clinical outcomes for your patients by referring patients early on, even before they begin to get under way with any treatment.

There is also an article that provides insight into the new NCCN guidelines on genetic and familial high-risk patient populations and what these new guidelines may mean for patient care. Commonly, patients are tested for genes that are specifically grouped by organ site (like breast cancer genes—BRCA1 and BRCA2). We will likely see consideration in the future to more broadly counsel and test patients for multiple categories. You will learn why in the article.

And we have added a new feature—Resources from Pharmaceutical Companies. You may not know about the resources, but they can benefit you from an educational perspective and your patients from a resource perspective. The first one provides you insight into what Pfizer Oncology offers. Plan to be surprised!

We are each privileged to be in the lives of cancer patients during the most vulnerable time of their (and their loved ones’) lives. Though your days may be long and frustrating at times, know that you are making a difference and take pride in doing so.

With kind regards,

Lillie D. Shockney, RN, BS, MAS
Editor-in-Chief

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