Plan of care for cancer patients

Plan of care for cancer patients

While treating the chronically ill, a major challenge is developing a plan of care that
addresses the specific needs of a patient and a caregiver. You need to be in close touch with
patients and their support group, family and peers, to come up with an ideal plan.
In this course project, you are going to develop a plan of care for a chronic illness group of
your choice. While executing the tasks of this project, remember that while you need to
give a general overview of the biomedical considerations of the case, the focus should
always be on the psychosocial elements. Your perspective in this care plan should be the
patient’s goals rather than that of the medical team.

Identification of the illness
The care for chronic illness requires articulate plans that involve the care giver and the
patient. This is crucial especially in the oncology related illnesses. The chronic illness in the area
of oncology that is addressed in this is cancer. Cancer illness has been on the increase in the
recent times. Although there has not been a well known cause of cancer, this chronic illness has


been associated with lifestyle that is subjective to the prevalent conditions for its development.
There is interest in the care for this chronic illness because it subjects the patients to lots of pain
and discomfort, hence, the need for nurses to articulate the care necessary for this chronic illness.
Much interest to this oncology chronic illness has emanated from the realization that
early detection can lead to better treatment and even cure. On the other hand, for those that the
detection comes a bit late, they are subjected to endure the bitter toil of the disease for the rest of
their lives. Stricker & O’Brien (2014) observe that; this would interest a nurse in the making to
choose this kind of ailment to develop the plan for care for it. The interest follows the urge to
see that the patients of this chronic illness are subjected to a care that is well planned such that
the pain and discomfort is minimized. It is also crucial that those patients live a fulfilling life
despite the challenges of the chronic illness. In this sense, it would be crucial to have a plan that
encourages and enables the patients to engage in the( healthy ) activities that they used to engage
in before so as not to feel to have been thrown out of life by the illness.
It is also crucial to have a plan that enables the patients to engage in economical
activities up to the maximum time possible. This is very crucial considering the economic impact
of the illness. Cancer is associated with a lot of economical demands. This follows the high cost
of the drugs and the processes employed in the treatment such as chemotherapy. Garland (2015)
observes that; these utilize huge finances and if the patient comes from a weak background
financial, it would be difficult to afford those services. Cancer illness also requires that the
patient uses a healthy diet so as to boost the immunity. This is costly especially in consideration
of the high cost of fruits that are much needed in the diet in order to keep a healthy diet.


In the preparation of plan of care, the interests of the patient as well as that of the care
giver are put in to consideration. In order to come up with a viable plan for the cancer patients, it
is crucial that the nurse making the plan considers the interest of the patient more than the
interest of the care giver. Dulko, Pace, Dittus, Sprague et al (2013) note that; there is always
expectation of difficulties to be encountered especially where there are languages or cultural
barriers. However, the crucial point here is to engage the patient in the conversation and not just
to have the plan in a document. In order to understand the interest of the patient it is crucial that
the care giver engages in interaction with the patient to understand them well. This also calls for
asking of questions to the patient so as to come up with a plan that is quite suitable for them. In
order to acquire the required information, it is crucial that the involved nurse prepares the
questions to be asked to the cancer patients in a bid to get direction to the care plan that suits
them. Such questions would include:
Personal details: these include their name, age, gender and maybe some little background
on them.
Specific diagnosis: It would be crucial for the nurse to establish whether the patient
understands the specific diagnosis of their illness.
Initial treatment plan: The nurse should seek to understand what initial plans the patient
had about the treatment of the disease. This helps the nurse to align the plan to the initial
Expected common and rare toxicities: The nurse establishes the toxicities expected and
the allergies that the patient may have.


Who will take care of specific aspects of treatment and their side effects: this touch on the
person that will be responsible in case the patient is subjected to conditions that do not allow
them to be responsible for some of their personal issues?
Psychosocial and supportive care plans: the nurse asks the patient about the expectations
of the patient about psychological and social support. For instance, I they would encourage visits
to their residence to be guided on issues concerning the disease or if they would be willing to
join support groups.
Vocational and financial concerns: For instance, would they still continue with their
current jobs?
Advanced care directives and preferences: The nurse establishes the anticipation of the
patient about advanced care directives and what they would prefer.



Dulko, D., Pace, C. M., Dittus, K. L., Sprague, B. L., Pollack, L. A., Hawkins, N. A., & Geller,
B. M. (2013). Barriers and Facilitators to Implementing Cancer Survivorship Care Plans.
Oncology Nursing Forum, 40(6), 575-580. doi:10.1188/13.ON
GARLAND, S. B. (2015). Planning Checklist For Chronic Illness. Kiplinger’s Retirement
Report, 22(1), 1-4.
Stricker, C. T., & O’Brien, M. (2014). Implementing the Commission on Cancer Standards for
Survivorship Care Plans. Clinical Journal Of Oncology Nursing, 1815-22.

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