Breast cancer survivorship study to be piloted at NCMC
GREELEY, Colo. (July 1, 2011) — A new research study piloted at North Colorado Medical Center will help breast cancer survivors transition back to life after treatment.
The Oncology Nursing Society has selected the Cancer Institute at North Colorado Medical Center as a pilot test site for a study on Breast Cancer Survivorship Quality Measures.
Julianne Fritz, Banner Health regional director of oncology services, said a cancer survivorship program provides care and support for the physical and emotional well-being of a patient who has been diagnosed with cancer. That care and support continues even after cancer treatments have ended.
“A person will have daily or weekly visits to the cancer center and then all of a sudden they’re done,” said Micki Holladay, a nurse in the NCMC Cancer Institute. “Then they go home to family and friends they haven’t spent time with in a while. It’s a hard transition.”
Through the research study, the cancer center research team will collect data to help identify the best practices for survivorship care.
The program is in collaboration with The Joint Commission. The goals of the project are to:
- Develop quality measures to assess and improve care for patients in the first year of survivorship post-treatment for breast cancer in the ambulatory setting.
- Test patient-centered symptom screening and management measures impacted by evidence-based nursing interventions, which build upon the ONS Putting Evidence into Practice resources and other sources of evidence.
- Evaluate the impact of the measure set in assessing and improving the quality of nursing and patient care.
- Evaluate the reliability based on organizational implementation of the standardized technical specifications at the data element, measure and measure set level.
NCMC’s role will be to review and provide feedback on the Breast Cancer Survivorship measure specifications manual, conduct retrospective review of patient records, collect and submit patient level data. The hospital also may be asked to participate in on-site reliability visits from project staff.
Areas that will be under review include: symptom assessment and intervention, post-treatment education, goal setting and attainment, follow up care, fatigue improvement and distress improvement.
Data collection for the study is scheduled to begin later this summer.
Three nurses – Holladay, Maribeth Taylor and Theresa Henley – from the Cancer Institute worked on the application earlier this year. Each of the nurses is currently pursuing her master’s degree in nursing and learned about the study through their coursework.
NCMC will be one of 30 to 50 sites selected for the program. Fritz said this is a testament to the strength of nursing at the hospital.
“I’m very proud to be a part of the study and to be involved in setting best practices for patient care,” she said.
ABOUT NORTH COLORADO MEDICAL CENTER
North Colorado Medical Center is a fully accredited, private, not-for-profit facility licensed to operate 398 beds. It serves as a regional medical center with community-based and specialty services in a service area including southern Wyoming, western Nebraska, western Kansas and northeastern Colorado. A family-centered obstetrics unit, cardiovascular, oncology, ortho/neuro, Level II trauma, Western States Burn Center and acute inpatient rehabilitation are among the many services offered through the medical center. Nearly 400,000 square feet of new patient care space was added to the northern Colorado region when the NCMC opened an expanded facility in December 2005. Included is the CardioVascular Institute of North Colorado featuring state-of-the-art heart services; expanded birthing center and neonatal care unit, new intensive care units and new surgical suites.
ABOUT BANNER HEALTH
Based in Phoenix, Banner Health is one of the largest, not-for-profit health care systems in the country. Banner has 23 facilities that offer an array of services including hospital care, home care, hospice care, nursing registries, surgery centers, laboratories, rehabilitation services. These facilities are located in seven states - Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Nebraska, Nevada, and Wyoming. In addition to emergency and medical services, Banner Health medical centers house a variety of specialized services, including heart care, cancer treatment, delivery of high-order multiple births, organ transplants, bone marrow transplants, rehabilitation services, and behavioral health services.
For more information, visit www.BannerHealth.com.