February 2016 VOL 7, NO 1

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Letters from Lillie

Navigating Barriers to Care with Outreach and Prevention

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

Lillie_Shockley98pxWelcome, Academy of Oncology Nurse & Patient Navigators (AONN+) members, to 2016! We have created another great issue of the Journal of Oncology Navigation & Survivorship (JONS) for you, and I hope you will agree after you read it. Some of the features you will find in this issue are written by lay navigators, nurse navigators, survivorship patient navigators, and others. This issue is a great representation of how broad our reach is across the various professions within the oncology navigation field.

Our AONN+ research committee had a name change a few months back; it is now referred to as the Evidence into Practice Committee, which describes the charge of this committee and how it can personally benefit you and your patients.

Although our organization spends a lot of time discussing navigating patients with cancer across the continuum of care, there are other aspects of navigation that we should never ignore—community outreach and cancer prevention. On the Evidence into Practice Committee’s page on the AONN+ website you will find some historical information about how community outreach was “born,” and learn about the resources available to you through the Evidence into Practice Committee. Tap into this valuable resource when you are ready.

Speaking of getting ready, the first 2 articles in this issue show how novice and seasoned navigators applied evidence into practice regarding community outreach. The first case study focuses on community outreach and prevention of head and neck cancer, and the second focuses on prevention and early detection of lung cancer. These 2 case studies are very much worth reviewing; I hope they entice you to provide similar awareness, education, and support in your local and regional communities!

Cultural barriers to care and treatment can be difficult to overcome. In another article, we share information on how volunteer lay navigators work with nurse navigators to address this important issue on behalf of the patients they support.

As many of you know, one of my passions is caring for women with metastatic breast cancer. We also feature an article that focuses on palliative care and quality of life. Palliative care continues to get a bad reputation when it should not. When we think about it, the purpose of palliative care is really preserving or restoring quality of life. If you are involved with patients with serious symptoms that prevent them from maintaining some joy in their lives as they approach the end of their life, read this article carefully.

Without patient participation in clinical trials, there would be no improvements in cancer care. Clinical trial enrollment is imperative to move cancer treatment forward. Inside this issue you will find a list of select clinical trials currently enrolling patients with lung cancer that we hope you can share with members of your team.

Wouldn’t it be amazing to see your name published as an author of a JONS article? Not only is it possible, it is also a new goal for 2016 that you can personally achieve. Let us know what initiatives you are working on or want to address on behalf of the patients you navigate. Gather your colleagues, and let the Evidence into Practice Committee guide you along; this is a wonderful opportunity to share new knowledge with other AONN+ members, and would be a great addition to your curriculum vitae.

With kind regards,
Lillie D. Shockney, RN, BS, MAS
University Distinguished Service Associate Professor of Breast Cancer, Depts of Surgery and Oncology;
Administrative Director, The Johns Hopkins Breast Center;
Director, Cancer Survivorship Programs at the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins;
Associate Professor, JHU School of Medicine, Depts of Surgery, Oncology & Gynecology and Obstetrics; Associate Professor, JHU School of Nursing
Baltimore, MD
E-mail: shockli@jhmi.edu

Related Articles
Survivorship - February 1, 2016

Evaluating the Effects of a Physician-Referred Exercise Program on Cancer-Related Fatigue and Quality of Life Among Early Cancer Survivors

Background: Cancer-related fatigue (CRF) is the most common symptom experienced by cancer patients, and it may persist for years after treatment. CRF is a stressor that often results in poor [ Read More ]

Evidence into Practice - February 1, 2016

Novice Navigator: A Case Study on Community Outreach for Head and Neck Cancers

In this community outreach example, the daunting challenges of treatment, and the impact on quality of life, drive the questions, “How can we better serve these patients?” and “Is there [ Read More ]