Fort Myers, FL – February 12, 2018…… Florida Cancer Specialists (FCS) Director of Nursing Diane Cope, PhD, ARNP, BC, AOCNP, was second author of a review and interventional article that examined the role of the Advanced Practitioner (AP) in maintaining compliance in patients taking oral oncolytics. Published recently in the Journal of the Advanced Practitioner in Oncology (JADPRO), the review highlighted many of the barriers to adherence that patients face and analyzed the role of APs in mitigating some of these issues.
As oral medications for cancer treatment become more prevalent, there can be benefits for both the patient and for practitioners, including reducing the time patients must spend in the clinic receiving IV medications. Citing earlier research (Thompson & Christian, 2016), the report stated, “This is a benefit to both APs and patients, as oral therapy is less invasive and reduces nursing time in infusion suites.”
While oral oncolytics offer certain advantages, the article points out that many factors should be considered by the Advanced Practitioner in order to encourage adherence to the medications’ regimens, including the potential for drug interactions if the patient is on multiple medications, complex dosing schedules, whether to take the medication with food or not, financial challenges, side effects and impact on the patient’s cardiac history, among others.
The article further states, “Over the course of treatment, many cancer patients will transition back and forth between acute and chronic symptoms and treatment plans. It is important to set appropriate treatment expectations, recognizing that patients will need individualized support based on where they are along their cancer journey.”
In an accompanying Case Study, Dr. Cope praised Rx To Go, the in-house specialty pharmacy for oral oncolytics at Florida Cancer Specialists, for its role in patient education and compliance. She said, “We’re also fortunate to have a specialty pharmacy with our practice… They’re great as far as getting copay assistance and working on foundation grants.”
Dr. William Harwin, Founder and President of FCS, has worked with Dr. Cope as his Nurse Practitioner for over two decades. He said, “Diane is a highly-respected leader and an extremely compassionate professional who has helped advance the quality of nursing care throughout our organization and developed a national reputation for excellence. She has authored several chapters in various text books, as well as numerous articles for professional journals, such as this one in JADPRO. It is a privilege to work with her.”
To read the full article: https://www.advancedpractitioner.com/media/227537/jadpro_7.pdf
Journal of the Advanced Practitioner in Oncology, Vol 8, Suppl 6, Dec 2017, 6-21
Thompson, N., & Christian, A. (2016). Oral chemotherapy: Not just an ordinary pill. American Nurse Today, 11(9), 16–20.