The Meaning of Being an Oncology Nurse: Investing to Make a Difference

Title: The Meaning of Being an Oncology Nurse: Investing to Make a Difference
Authors: Davis, Lindsey Ann
Date: 2012
Abstract: The landscape of cancer care is evolving and as a result nursing care continues to develop and respond to the changing needs of oncology patients and their families. There is a paucity of qualitative research examining the experience of being an oncology nurse on an inpatient unit. Therefore, a qualitative study using an interpretive phenomenological approach has been undertaken to discover the lived experience of being an oncology nurse. In-depth tape recorded interviews has been conducted with six oncology nurses who worked on two adult inpatient oncology units. Van Manen’s (1990) interpretive phenomenological approach has been used to analyze the data by subjecting the transcripts to an analysis both line by line and as a whole. The overarching theme of the interviews is: Investing to Make a Difference. The themes that reflect this overarching theme are: Caring for the Whole Person, Being an Advocate, Walking a Fine Line, and Feeling Like You are Part of Something Good. Oncology nurses provide care for their patients through a holistic lens that further enhances how they come to know their patients. Over time, relationships with patients and families develop and these nurses share that balancing the emotional aspects of their work is key in being able to continue to invest in their work and in these relationships. Their investment is further evident as oncology nurses continuously update their knowledge, for example, of treatment regimes, medication protocols, and as they champion their patients wishes and needs. As nurses develop their own identities as oncology nurses, they in turn enhance the team with their emerging skill and knowledge. These research findings serve to acknowledge the meaning of oncology nurses’ work and inform the profession’s understanding of what it means to be an oncology nurse.
CollectionThèses, 2011 - // Theses, 2011 -