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Oncology nurses are nursing professionals who work with patients who are suffering from cancer in some form or another, or are at risk or developing cancer. They work with people of all ages, in a range of settings, including hospitals, care homes and in patients’ homes.
They monitor their patients’ conditions, assess their symptoms and ensure maximum levels of comfort for the patient throughout all stages of treatment.
The job of an oncology nurse is varied. Primarily, they are caregivers; they prescribe and administer medication and various other treatments, such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy. This will most likely be done under the supervision of a doctor.
They also counsel and educate, providing information and emotional support for patients and their families. They advise patients on elements of wellbeing and care outside of traditional hospital treatment, such as suggesting support groups or advising changes in diet and exercise.
Much of the work will involve researching and keeping up to date with the quick-paced evolution of, and developments related to, cancer treatment, along with the best ways to care for patients going through courses of treatment. Coordination of treatment plans and administration additionally make up a substantial percentage of the job role.