Paper Presentation: Education Across the Cancer Care Continuum — A Nurse-Driven, Evidence-Based Education Program for Newly Diagnosed Pediatric Oncology Patients (204-1)

3:45 – 4:05 pm Thursday, September 5

Most newly diagnosed pediatric oncology patients begin their disease trajectory in the inpatient setting, but this initial hospitalization has become shorter as more care is provided in the outpatient setting. This creates a short timeframe for families to process the diagnosis, adapt to new roles, and acquire essential knowledge and care-management skills. Parents who feel inadequately prepared often struggle to care for their child at home; this might result in increased stress, poorer patient outcomes, and increased emergency department visits and readmissions.

Previously, a standard education checklist led to a last-minute rush by nurses to cover all topics prior to discharge, leading to delays and families feeling overwhelmed. Insufficient preparation of nurses to adapt patient education to varying time available, health literacy and learning styles presented additional barriers. After reviewing current literature and collaborating with multiple interdisciplinary team members, we created an evidence-based education program for newly diagnosed pediatric oncology patients. We developed a structured patient education program following initial diagnosis that addresses content, methods, and timing of the teaching to enhance families’ readiness for discharge and care at home. The Nursing Shared Governance team also helped to match families’ learning needs and health literacy levels with appropriate educational interventions, including hands-on care by parents and a treasure map highlighting key topics for the patient/family to complete prior to discharge. This presentation will explain how a structured evidence-based education program improves the quality of discharge education as well as patient safety and outcomes.

Stephanie Dote, MSN RN PHN BMTCN®
CNE Hours: