Parkway Cancer Centre Oncology Nurses: 15 Years of Service

Our staff nurses are the front-faces of Parkway Cancer Centre (PCC) and help to power our numerous achievements in cancer treatment. In celebration of PCC’s 15th Anniversary, we are featuring just some of the many faces of PCC’s team of nurses to learn about their years of service and the future of nursing at PCC.

What do you do day-to-day?

Nurse Kelsy: My day-to-day involves carrying out regular clinic routines. It includes attending to patients, delivering medication and assisting doctors. We also provide knowledge about pre-and post-treatment to patients and advise them how to look after themselves.

Nurse Lydia: As an oncology nurse, we also help administer chemotherapy and other infusions to patients. In addition, we work closely with the cancer support team to ensure the most efficient, safe care and emotional support for patients and families.

Nurse Pichu: We’d start the day by checking on our patient cases, so we know who we can expect to care for for the day. Additionally, we act as an advocate for patients by communicating with doctors effectively.

Why nursing?

Nurse Kelsy: To be honest, it was not my choice, but my mom’s. She thought that having a nurse in the family would be good if anyone at home needed medical attention. [Laughs] After I joined nursing, I fell in love with the profession.

Nurse Lydia: Nursing was not my first career choice, either, but through the years as a senior nurse, I have worked in many specialities from intensive critical care units, school healthcare, palliative home care and finally a private oncology clinic. My speciality was initially advanced intensive critical care nursing, but after I joined PCC, I fell in love with the nature of work as an oncology nurse, and have since stayed on for over 15 years.

Nurse Pichu: I was not a good student, so after my ‘O’ Levels back in 1997, I was given a choice to study only Engineering or Nursing. At the time, I was caring for my grandmother, so naturally I made the ‘easier’ choice to study Nursing. But I must say, studying Biology is not as easy as I imagined.

The most rewarding part about working at PCC is…

Nurse Kelsy: … our team spirit. We help each other and encourage one another, not just between nurses but with doctors as well. Sometimes, we need help from others; nursing is not a one-man show.

Nurse Lydia: As a nurse, we not only teach patients, but have also been taught by patients during our journeys with them. The life experience you get from patients is something you cannot get anywhere else.

Nurse Pichu: I’m very thankful to be part of this cohesive and passionate team. What is most rewarding is seeing the patient and family members thank us for our team’s efforts.

The most difficult part of nursing is…

Nurse Kelsy: Even after many years, the most difficult part is still breaking bad news to patients. It requires skill and experience to find the best way of delivering the truth without shocking patients or making it seem scary or hopeless.

Nurse Lydia: At PCC, we often meet patients from abroad who, due to travel constraints or financial issues, need a caregiver for their extended care regimen. In such situations, I often find it a challenge to educate caregivers, especially without reliable nursing staff in their home countries to guide them.

Nurse Pichu: When doctors exhaust their ‘ammunition’. To me, when such things happen, the most difficult part is to tell patients “Sorry. We have done our best”.

What motivates nurses

Nurse Kelsy: Watching patients get better is a huge encouragement for me to carry on with this career.

Nurse Lydia: I always feel for cancer patients—they are my spiritual teacher; their stories have taught me to be a better person. The appreciation and thankful attitudes exhibited by patients and their families have also motivated me to continue my passion.

Nurse Pichu: A heart of thankfulness, knowing deep down, I am blessed to be a blessing. I am far more privileged compared to many of the patients I cared for.

Hopes for the field of nursing in the next 15 years

Nurse Kelsy: Nursing is becoming more well-rounded, and there is an expectation for us to not just deliver basic care, but also physical and psychological care as well. My hope for the future would be to work with doctors and patients to deliver quality of life so that patients can make the most of what they have.

Nurse Lydia: Emerging technology such as artificial intelligence and robotics can help nurses improve patient recovery outcomes. However, overreliance on technology tends to objectify patients and reduce them to mere data points. It can’t replace the humanistic, interpersonal relationship that a patient shares with their nurses. My hopes for the field of nursing in the next 15 years is that nurses will preserve the art of caring as they incorporate technology into their practices to achieve holistic quality care

Nurse Pichu: I am hoping to see more caring nurses who truly go the extra mile, building trusting relationships with patients.

POSTED IN Up Close and Personal
TAGS cancer nurse, experience with cancer patient