Specialist lung cancer nurses for South Australian metro public hospitals

The partnership with Lung Foundation is aimed to help improve the care of patients diagnosed with lung disease.

Nurses will work across the Royal Adelaide Hospital and The Queen Elizabeth Hospital, one at the Flinders Medical Centre and one at the Lyell McEwin Hospital.

A respiratory care nurse has also started at the Central Adelaide Local Health Network, working at both the Royal Adelaide Hospital and The Queen Elizabeth Hospital.

With over 1,000 South Australians predicted to be diagnosed with lung cancer in 2024, the support from these nurses would make a real difference to the care journey, said SA Health Minister Chris Picton.

“We are pleased to invest $2.5 million over four years to these four speciality positions supporting patients across metropolitan Adelaide.

“We certainly shared Lung Foundation Australia’s concerns regarding the lack of lung cancer nurses in South Australia, leaving many without adequate support to manage their condition.”

The positions provide South Australians living with lung cancer with expert clinical, social, and emotional support as they navigate the healthcare system.

The specialist lung cancer nurses will provide a link between the patient and treatment teams, whilst delivering a wide range of services including advocating for the patient during discussions around treatment options and care plans, clarifying technical or complicated information, and connecting patients with other health professionals.

A 14-month Commonwealth-funded pilot of the Lung Foundation model of lung cancer nurse care found, among other benefits, it shortened the timeframe between diagnosis and treatment, improving care and creating health system efficiencies.

CALHN Heart and Lung Program Nurse Lead Victoria Fitton said the continuous support from a lung cancer nurse could greatly minimise the stress and trauma of a lung cancer diagnosis for an individual and their family, while also delivering coordinated care support, clinical information, and advice throughout the lung cancer journey.

“These nurses are also able to assess patients with lung cancer to assist in optimising treatment, interpreting test results, managing symptoms of the disease and side effects from treatment, and arranging referrals to support organisations to assist with functional and practical issues that arise for the patient and their family.”

Lung Foundation Australia Acting CEO Christa Bayer said the four nurses would implement the specific model of care relating to the Lung Cancer Nurse Program, blended with telehealth nurse support.

“We will manage an independent evaluation of the program, while supporting the training, community of practice and professional development of the Lung Foundation Specialist Lung Cancer Nurses over the next four years.”

The four new positions form part of an initiative to recruit a total of 76 nurses in priority areas of need and part of the state government’s commitment to employ an additional 300 nurses across the state.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Want more? Read the latest issue of ANMJ



Advertise with ANMJ

The ANMJ provides a range of advertising opportunities within our printed monthly journal and via our digital platforms.