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Academic Practice Partnership Produces New Oncology Elective For Nursing Students

Galen College of Nursing has announced that its academic practice partnership with HCA Healthcare has produced a new specialty elective for nursing students enrolled in Galen’s undergraduate Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program and interested in oncology nursing care. Entitled, “The Foundations of Oncology Nursing Practice”, the new undergraduate course is the result of a focused collaboration between Galen and Sarah Cannon, the Cancer Institute of HCA Healthcare, and believed to be the first of its kind in nursing education.

“In 2020, when Galen College of Nursing and HCA Healthcare formed this ground-breaking academic practice partnership, our purpose was to connect evidence-based practice to the delivery of nursing education. This new oncology course does just that,” said Galen CEO, Mark Vogt. “This is a model we will use moving forward to help enhance the learning of our graduates in this and other specialty areas of nursing.”

The innovative course focuses on the most recent advances and emerging trends in oncology nursing care and teaches students how to provide holistic care of patients experiencing multi-system oncological health problems, optimizing patient outcomes, and nursing responsibilities as an interprofessional team member. The course incorporates interactive content, recorded panel sessions, and interviews with cancer survivors, cancer support organizations, and subject matter experts currently working in the oncology field. Course content ranges from foundational oncology nursing knowledge and skills to an in-depth exploration of various solid tumors, hematologic malignancies, and oncologic emergencies. Providing effective care, communication, and support to patients who are living with cancer, requiring end-of-life care, as well as caring for survivors transitioning to life after cancer is also emphasized.

“There is a growing interest from our students to become more immersed in nursing specialties prior to entering the nursing workforce,” explained Tracy A. Ortelli, PhD, RN, CNE, ANEF, FAAN, Executive Vice President, Teaching & Learning Innovation. “The Foundations of Oncology Nursing Practice course is a new elective that will give students an opportunity to gain a deeper understanding about oncology nursing, which in turn may inform their thinking about future career opportunities. The creation of this course will help create a roadmap in which we meaningfully think about preparing the future of nursing. This is just the beginning to our progressive and vital work with HCA Healthcare.”

Students will have the opportunity to further examine the role of the nurse as well as the experiences of the patient to apply knowledge and skills when responding to real-world examples in oncology nursing. The course will be available starting July 2022 as an elective to students in the prelicensure BSN and Online RN to BSN programs.

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