Volume 1, Issue 1, September 2010
Coordinator's Message

Lori McMullen, MSN, RN, OCN®
Ewing, NJ

Welcome to all members!

It is an honor and pleasure to serve as the coordinator for the brand new Nurse Navigator SIG. After functioning as a focus group for two years, it was obvious that nurse navigators needed their own SIG. Our member numbers have doubled since we first applied to be a SIG in April! Patient navigation was a hot topic at the ONS 35th Annual Congress; this year’s pre-Congress session on navigation was the most attended pre-Congress session that has been held.

I am a nurse navigator at Hunterdon Regional Cancer Center in Flemington, NJ, and I navigate all cancer sites (except breast). My role has been in existence for two years; it was modeled after the role of the breast navigator who has been in her position for nine years.

As the field of patient navigation continues to grow, our SIG has the privilege and the responsibility to help promote a standardization of basic job function as it applies to the nurse. One of the most requested items from other nurse navigators is a job template that can serve as a foundation for a navigation position. Hopefully our SIG can help develop such a tool. Another top request is metrics and how outcomes are measured. As a SIG, perhaps we can develop a forum to address this issue. The Breast Care SIG has a successful mentorship program. Wouldn’t it be nice to offer mentorship to new nurse navigators?

These are my ideas; I would love to hear other members’ thoughts, and I certainly cannot do it alone! As a SIG, we need a Web administrator to manage the SIG Virtual Community, articles to be submitted for our newsletter, and project team leaders and members to develop our ideas into realities. Our SIG will be submitting either a pre-Congress session or Congress session for 2011, could you be a speaker? Or, maybe you would like to consider running for SIG coordinator-elect in 2011?

I look forward to working with a dynamic group of nurses. As nurse navigators, many of us have the opportunity to develop and refine a new role in nursing, an opportunity that does not present itself often. Let’s see what we can do!

The Nurse Navigator SIG Newsletter is produced by members of the
Nurse Navigator SIG and ONS staff and is not a peer-reviewed publication.

Special Interest Group Newsletter  September 2010

Nurse Navigator SIG Mission

  • The mission of the Nurse Navigator SIG is to provide networking opportunities for nurse navigators and to promote the establishment of measurable outcomes and best practices in the field of oncology nurse navigation.

Proposed Goals for 2010

  • Develop a general template for an oncology nurse navigator job description by surveying members of the Nurse Navigator SIG to identify similarities in job description.
  • Results will be distributed in our newsletter and possibly presented as a poster presentation at ONS Congress 2011 or published in the Clinical Journal of Oncology Nursing.
  • Establish a liaison position within the Nurse Navigator SIG for a member or members to connect with the National Coalition of Oncology Nurse Navigators (NCONN) and Academy of Oncology Nurse Navigators (AONN) to promote a working relationship to globally advance the role of oncology nurse navigation.

These goals have not yet been approved.

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Special Interest Group Newsletter  September 2010

Editors' Message
Welcome Letter

Linda Aeschliman, RN, OCN®
Nevada City, CA

Carol Bush, BS, RN
Wichita, KS

Dominique Srdanovic, RN, OCN®, MA
Stamford, CT

Welcome to our first issue of the Nurse Navigator SIG Newsletter from your three co-editors representing all three time zones: Dominique Srdanovic, RN, OCN®, MA, in Connecticut; Carol Bush, BS, RN, in Kansas; and Linda Aeschliman, RN, OCN®, in California. We are excited to be able to offer this introductory issue one month after our SIG status was made official. Suffice it to say, we decided on succinct and simple for this first issue!

We encourage you to contact us and try your hand at writing an article as a “regional reporter.” Here are some ideas that would utilize your own expertise and experience or perhaps give you a chance to research a topic that you want to learn more about to help your patients.

  • We all love stories—tell us about a special patient, a nurse navigation “moment,” a particularly tough day, a stellar example of multi-disciplinary collaboration—anything, just share.
  • If you are involved in developing a new navigation program, tell us about it.
  • If your institution has reviewed various navigation data reporting and collection software programs, share your analysis.
  • Outreach and marketing to patients and to the medical community—what strategies and tools have been successful in your practice?

A paragraph or a page or two, whatever you can do!

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Special Interest Group Newsletter  September 2010

Share Your Knowledge at ONS Congress!

Are you a new nurse navigator seeking connection and information from experienced nurse navigators? Are you an experienced nurse navigator looking to take your program to next the next level? You won’t want to miss the ONS 36th Annual Congress, April 28-May 1 in Boston, MA. The Nurse Navigator SIG will be submitting ideas to ONS for consideration of a pre-Congress or Congress session. We are in the planning stages and want to present a session that will allow you to establish new connections and bring back real information that you can apply to your own practice.

We need your knowledge, resources, and experience to make it successful. Have you developed a great team and a set of useful tools? Why not volunteer to present or be a part of a panel? Encountered a nurse navigator who was a great mentor for your program start-up? Why not suggest them as a speaker? Are you a techno-wizard and love crunching those numbers and outcomes? Why not share your tools or review software that has been useful for your practice? Have you overcome obstacles, won over staff and physicians, and come out of the experience in one piece? Consider sharing your stories and strategies. Have you convened a nurse navigator network or association? Why not volunteer to speak or take part in a poster presentation?

We want it all…examples from research, hospital-based, community-based, rural and urban settings. Bring it on! Contact any of the SIG Leadership via e-mail or consider submitting a poster to represent our SIG.

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Special Interest Group Newsletter  September 2010

Take a Look
Joint Position Statement on the Role of Oncology Nursing and Oncology Social Work in Patient Navigator

In March of this year, ONS, the Association of Oncology Social Work (AOSW), and the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) approved a joint position on the role of oncology nursing and oncology social work in patient navigation.

It Is the Position of ONS, AOSW, and NASW That

  • Patient navigation processes, whether provided on-site or in coordination with local agencies or facilities, are essential components of cancer care services.
  • Patient outcomes are optimal when a social worker, nurse, and lay navigator (defined as a trained nonprofessional or volunteer) function as a multidisciplinary team.
  • Patient navigation programs in cancer care must address underserved populations in the community.
  • Patient navigation programs must lay the groundwork for their sustainability.
  • Nurses and social workers in oncology who function in patient navigator roles do so based on the scope of practice for each discipline. Educational preparation and professional certification play roles in regulating the practice of both disciplines.
  • Nationally recognized standards of practice specific to the discipline and specialty also define safe and effective practice.
  • Nurses and social workers in oncology who perform navigator services should have education and knowledge in community assessment, cancer program assessment, resolution of system barriers, the cancer continuum, cancer health disparities, cultural competence, and the individualized provision of assistance to patients with cancer, their families, caregivers, and survivors at risk.
  • Additional research to explore, confirm, and advance patient navigation processes, roles, and identification of appropriate evidence-based outcomes measures must be supported.
  • Ongoing collaboration to identify and/or derive metrics that can be used to clarify the role, function, and desired outcomes of navigators must be supported and promoted.
  • Navigation services can be delegated to trained nonprofessionals and/or volunteers and should be supervised by nurses or social workers.
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Special Interest Group Newsletter  September 2010


Web Administrator—Share your computer talent with your fellow SIG members by designing and maintaining the Nurse Navigator Virtual Community. Not a computer guru, no problem, ONS has staff to lend you a hand!

SIG Poster Designer—Did you know that every SIG has their own poster that is displayed at Congress? Please consider putting your creative talents to work in designing our first poster for the ONS 36th Annual Congress in Boston, MA.

2011 Nurse in Washington Internship (NIWI) Program Scholarships—Scholarship applications for the 2011 Nurse in Washington Internship (NIWI) program to be held March 13–15, 2011, are now being accepted. Applications are due Friday, October 1, 2010. The application can be accessed through the NIWI program. Several scholarships are being offered this year including a full scholarship, a registration scholarship, and a student registration scholarship.

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Special Interest Group Newsletter  September 2010


RE:Connect is a blog written by oncology nurses on a variety of topics of interest to other nurses in the specialty, including facing day-to-day challenges at work, juggling busy lives at home, and keeping up to date with the magnitude of information available for practicing nurses. This month on RE:Connect, you’ll find discussions titled Survivor Terminology Gets Under My Skin, Oncology Care Unit Named Best Nursing Team, Lance Armstrong Brings Hope and Inspiration to Many, The Lady With the Lamp, and More Studies Support Exercise During and After Cancer. As a reader, join in on the conversation and connect with other oncology nurse readers by posting your own stories, tips, ideas, and suggestions in the comments section at the end of each blog post.

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Special Interest Group Newsletter  September 2010

Five-Minute In-Service

In the latest issue of ONS Connect, the Five-Minute In-Service takes a look at complementary and alternative medicine use in cancer survivors, which appeared in the June 2010 issue of the Clinical Journal of Oncology Nursing.

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Special Interest Group Newsletter  September 2010

Membership Information

SIG Membership Benefits

  • Network with colleagues in an identified subspecialty area around the country.
  • Contribute articles for your SIG’s newsletter.
  • Participate in discussions with other SIG members.
  • Contribute to the future path of the SIG.
  • Share your expertise.
  • Support and/or mentor a colleague.
  • Receive information about the latest advancements in treatments, clinical trials, etc.
  • Participate in ONS leadership by running for SIG coordinator-elect or join SIG work groups.
  • Acquire information with a click of a mouse at http://ons.org/membership including
    • Educational opportunities for your subspecialty
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    • Calls to action
    • News impacting or affecting your specific SIG
    • Newsletters
    • Communiqués
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Join a Virtual Community

A great way to stay connected to your SIG is to join its Virtual Community. It’s easy to do so. All you will need to do is

  • Log on to the ONS Web site (http://www.ons.org/).
  • Select "Membership" from the tabs above.
  • Then, click on "ONS Chapters and Special Interest Groups."
  • Scroll down to "Visit the ONS Special Interest Groups (SIG) Virtual Community" and click.
  • Now, select "Find a SIG."
  • Locate and click on the name of your SIG from the list of all ONS SIGs displayed.
  • Once the front page of your SIG’s Virtual Community appears on screen, select "New User" from the top left. (This allows you to create log-in credentials.)
  • Type the required information into the text fields as prompted.
  • Click "Join Group" (at the bottom right of the text fields) when done.

    Special Notices

    • If you already have log-in credentials generated from the ONS Web site, use this information instead of attempting to generate new information.
    • If you created log-in credentials for the ONS Web site and wish to have different log-in information, you will not be able to use the same e-mail address to generate your new credentials. Instead, use an alternate e-mail address.

Subscribe to Your SIG’s Virtual Community Discussion Forum
Once you have your log-in credentials, you are ready to subscribe to your SIG’s Virtual Community discussion forum. To do so,

  • Select "Log In," located next to "New User," and enter your information.
  • Next, click on the "Discussion" tab on the top right of the title bar.
  • Locate and select "Subscribe to Discussion"
  • Enter e-mail address.
  • Click "Finish."
  • You are now ready to begin participating in your SIG’s discussion forum.

Participate in Your SIG’s Virtual Community Discussion Forum

  • First, log in. (This allows others to identify you and enables you to receive notification [via e-mail] each time a response or new topic is posted.)
  • Click on "Discussion" from the top title bar.
  • Click on any posted topic to view contents and post responses.

Sign Up to Receive Your SIG’s Virtual Community Announcements
As an added feature, members also are able to register to receive their SIG’s announcements by e-mail.

  • From your SIG’s Virtual Community page, locate the "Sign Up Here to Receive Your SIG’s Announcements" section.
  • Select the "Click Here" feature, which will take you to a link to subscribe.
  • Once the "For Announcement Subscription Only" page appears select how you wish to receive your announcements.
    • As individual e-mails each time a new announcement is posted
    • One e-mail per day comprised of all new daily announcements posted
    • Opt-out, indicating that you will frequently browse your SIG’s Virtual Community page for new postings
  • Enter your e-mail address.
  • Click on "Next Page."
  • Click "Finish"
  • You are now subscribed to receive announcements.
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Special Interest Group Newsletter  September 2010

Nurse Navigator SIG Officers

Coordinator (2010–2012)
Lori McMullen, MSN, RN, OCN®
Ewing, NJ

Linda Aeschliman, RN, OCN®
Nevada City, CA

Carol Bush, BS, RN
Wichita, KS


Dominique Srdanovic, RN, OCN®, MA
Stamford, CT

ONS Copy Editor
Emily Nalevanko, MFA
Pittsburgh, PA

Know someone who would like to receive a print copy of this newsletter?
To print a copy of this newsletter from your home or office computer, click here or on the printer icon located on the SIG Newsletter front page. Print copies of each online SIG newsletter also are available through the ONS National Office. To have a copy mailed to you or another SIG member, contact Membership/Leadership Specialist Carol DeMarco at cdemarco@ons.org or 866-257-4ONS, ext. 6230.

ONS Membership/Leadership Team Contact Information

Brian K. Theil, CAE, Director of Membership

Diane Scheuring, MBA, CAE, CMP, Manager of Member Services

Carol DeMarco, Membership/Leadership Specialist

The Oncology Nursing Society (ONS) does not assume responsibility for the opinions expressed and information provided by authors or by Special Interest Groups (SIGs). Acceptance of advertising or corporate support does not indicate or imply endorsement of the company or its products by ONS or the SIG. Web sites listed in the SIG newsletters are provided for information only. Hosts are responsible for their own content and availability.

Oncology Nursing Society
125 Enterprise Dr.
Pittsburgh, PA 15275-1214

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