Working with oncology patients at Summa Health keeps Beth Hoover, BSN, RN, OCN, passionate about nursing. This story about her details a project she designed to help improve care of patients who are receiving various therapies. This story featuring Beth Hoover was written by Amy E Johnson MSN, RN, ACCNS-AG, Clinical Nurse Specialist at Summa Health System.
Beth Hoover BSN, RN, OCN, has been a RN for 15 years. During her time as a clinical nurse, she has worked on an inpatient oncology unit and as a home care oncology nurse. Since 2010, she has been working in an outpatient oncology department at Summa Health. In her current role, she is responsible for administering various infusions: chemotherapy, biotherapies and immunotherapies. Beth also performs non-oncology services such as IVIG and iron infusions, to name a few.
Beth recently completed a clinical ladder project designed to improve communication between oncology and non-oncology providers. She began noticing in her practice that there was a significant knowledge gap among providers on the various oncology treatments patients were receiving. Not only is the specific type of therapy relevant, but also the management of symptoms related to a patient’s therapy can be mistaken for another issue, and treated improperly when there is a knowledge deficit. Beth worked to create a wallet card for the patients that detailed the type of infusion therapy they are currently receiving and possible side effects they may experience. Additionally Beth created oncology specific education for the emergency room nursing staff to help broaden their knowledge of this patient population.
Beth says the patients are what keeps her passionate about nursing. She finds her work very rewarding and enjoys participating with patients through the course of their care. She loves her coworkers and believes she works with the best of the best! She knows someone from her team will always have her back and there is always a shoulder to lean on during those particularly bad days.
She believes the most important tool needed to be a successful oncology nurse is having a strong sense of empathy. Having the ability to be openly emotional but still professional and finding ways to leave the bad days or the sad days at work is a long-term skill that is necessary to continue finding joy in the nursing profession.