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CME/CE Activities

Solving the Puzzle: Abstract Creation, Submission, and Presentation
Available for Credit: May 30, 2022 - July 31, 2023
Course participants will learn how their daily practice as a navigator sets the foundation for creating abstracts. Learners will identify key pieces in assembling a successful abstract such as abstract writing, creative presentation, and submission. Education will be enhanced by the sharing of best practices and opportunities to dialogue with faculty.

Cancer care delivery approaches to address financial toxicity among cancer patients are not well-established, especially in rural communities. In this study, we identified healthcare staff perspectives of financial toxicity experienced by cancer patients and examined staff- and systems-level cancer care delivery approaches for addressing financial toxicity, with a focus on rural cancer survivors in Kentucky. We conducted interviews with cancer center staff who provided financial navigation and/or assistance to oncology patients and their caregivers at 15 cancer centers in Kentucky. Findings from this study revealed several key factors related to the availability and accessibility of cancer care delivery approaches at patient, staff, and system levels for reducing financial toxicity and improving access to care for rural and urban cancer survivors. Participants perceived high financial toxicity among cancer patients, especially in rural regions, related to the high cost of cancer care, as well the patients’ limited ability to engage in cost-of-care conversations, low cost-related health literacy, and challenges in navigating cancer care. The availability of trained financial navigators/counselors dedicated solely to assisting the cancer patient population was limited, as was the use of standardized and proactive screening methods for financial toxicity. While in-house and external financial assistance programs were frequently tapped into, there were limitations in the navigators’ ability to provide cost estimates based on insurance coverage and in assisting patients with applying for health insurance. Gaps in cancer care delivery approaches to reduce financial toxicity of patients included enhanced transportation options, additional financial navigation staff, early assessment of patient financial barriers and concerns, increased cost transparency, and enhanced cost-of-care conversations between patients and clinicians. Establishing sustainable oncology-designated financial navigation roles is imperative to expanding patient support and improving health and financial outcomes of cancer patients in rural communities.

Breast cancer (BC) is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among adolescent and young adult (AYA) females in the United States. Compared with older adults, female AYAs are more likely to experience a delay in diagnosis and are more likely to face other challenges, such as childcare and decisions about fertility preservation. Despite increasing awareness of AYAs with cancer, few studies consider underserved groups such as racial/ethnic minorities or low-income individuals. In this needs assessment, therefore, we focused on female AYAs who may be most likely to experience health disparities: those from racial/ethnic minorities, and/or have low income, live outside urban areas, and/ or those with metastatic BC. Information was combined from focus groups with AYA survivors and key informant interviews with those who provide services to them. The findings point to the key role navigators can play in providing sustained support that is tailored to AYA survivors.

On May 14, 2020, experts in the management of patients with cholangiocarcinoma (CCA) convened for an accredited continuing education virtual symposium held during the Academy of Oncology Nurse & Patient Navigators (AONN+) 2020 Midyear Virtual Conference. Faculty included Richard Kim, MD, Senior Member and Section Chief, Gastrointestinal Medical Oncology, Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, FL, who provided an overview of CCA, current standards of care, and the use of FGFR and IDH1 inhibitors in the treatment of advanced CCA, and Lorraine Drapek, DNP, FNP-BC, AOCNP, Nurse Practitioner, Radiation Oncology/GI Services, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, who discussed the nurse’s role in preventing and managing adverse events associated with the use of newer targeted treatments. This article provides key highlights from this symposium.

Oncology patients undergoing treatment may have an oncology nurse navigator (ONN) as part of the care team. ONNs are professional registered nurses with oncology clinical knowledge who assist patients in overcoming barriers within the healthcare system to achieve improved outcomes. The purpose of the study “Emergency Department Utilization by Navigated Oncology Patients Compared with Non-Navigated Oncology Patients” was to determine if oncology patients who were assigned nurse navigators utilized the emergency department differently than patients who did not have a nurse navigator. The authors analyzed data from 2 acute care facilities in 1 Western state over 3 years, comparing the frequency of emergency department visits and descriptive characteristics of navigated with non-navigated oncology patients. The 2 groups (navigated and non-navigated patients) varied in characteristics, including cancer type, tumor stage, number of comorbidities, and use of hospice care. The authors controlled for differences to compare emergency department use between the groups. Despite this, results indicated that navigated patients utilized the emergency department more frequently. While unexpected, the results provide an opportunity for ONN programs to evaluate the process and the accuracy of the data obtained from measuring clinical outcomes. The research provided an opportunity to improve the referral and communication processes with the ONN program at the health system, an implication for other facilities. Analyzing quality data, including emergency department visits, associated with ONNs highlights opportunities for high(er)-risk and vulnerable cancer patients to be identified and supported earlier in their cancer process.

The Twelfth Annual Navigation & Survivorship Conference was a Live-Streamed virtual meeting that was held on November 17-21, 2021. The Twelfth Annual AONN+ Navigation & Survivorship Conference is designed to address the questions of navigators, social workers, physicians, and administrators in regard to cancer care, and offer practical solutions from experts and peers in implementing effective programs and measuring their outcomes. To further extend the educational reach of the meeting, highlights of the information presented at the conference will disseminated to the full AONN membership and the oncology nursing community through an accredited CE 8-12 page highlights monograph that will appear in the Journal of Oncology Navigation & Survivorship®, The Oncology Nurse-APN/PA®, as well as on-line on the journal websites: www.TheOncologyNurse.com and http://www.jons-online.com/

In collaboration with the Cancer Support Community, we are pleased to invite you to a webinar entitled “Precision Medicine & Comprehensive Biomarker Testing: Using Patient-Tested Plain Language to Improve Communication with Your Patients” presented by Claire Saxton, Cancer Support Community Vice President of Patient Experience and Nikki Martin, LUNGevity Foundation Director of Precision Medicine Initiatives.

This educational offering will enrich the navigator’s understanding of the vast issue and impact of financial toxicity experienced by the patient with cancer. The webinar aims to equip oncology navigators with resources to manage patients who are experiencing financial toxicity. Navigators will also explore strategies to build a financial navigation program.

Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and intersex people comprise approximately 5% of the U.S. population, yet healthcare professional student education on sexual and gender minority (SGM) health is sparse. This study explored the degree to which sociodemographic factors and student affiliation with SGM people explained self-reported competence of healthcare professional students in caring for SGM patients. Survey results from a sample of healthcare professional students attending one urban university (n=48) showed that liberal political affiliation, less religiosity, and greater affiliation with SGM people explained greater SGM cultural competence. Greater number of SGM-specific training hours was associated with greater Clinical Preparedness and affirming Behaviors.

CAR-T Therapy: Improving the Patient and Caregiver Experience
Available for Credit: December 1, 2021 - January 15, 2023
In collaboration with the Cancer Support Community, we are pleased to invite you to a webinar entitled “CAR-T Therapy: Improving the Patient and Caregiver Experience” presented by Ginna Granroth, PA-C, MS, Physician Assistant, Bone Marrow Transplantation, Physician Assistant Clinical Coordinator, Hematology/Oncology, Mayo Clinic Kelly Garvin, BSN, RN, OCN, Registered Nurse, Blood and Marrow Transplant and Cellular Immunotherapy, H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute Lauren Kriegel, LCSW, OSW-C, Helpline Community Navigator, Cancer Support Community

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