An evaluation of the role of support workers in lung cancer
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An evaluation of the role of support workers in lung cancer

Steve Brummell Senior lecturer, Sheffield Hallam University
Angela Tod Florence Nightingale Foundation chair in clinical nursing practice research, University of Manchester
Ann McDonnell Emeritus professor of health services research, Sheffield Hallam University
Maria Guerin Lung cancer nurse specialist, Aintree University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Liverpool
Vanessa Beattie Lung cancer nurse specialist, Aintree University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Liverpool
Rachel Ibbotson Research fellow, Sheffield Hallam University

Steve Brummell and colleagues present evidence on how the support worker role is being implemented in the care of patients with lung cancer in the UK

Aim To map the prevalence and type of unregistered roles that have emerged to support lung cancer nurse specialists (LCNSs), and to explore the effect of support worker roles on the work of LCNSs and how this may affect multidisciplinary teams and service delivery.

Methods A mixed methods approach was taken using an electronic survey and qualitative telephone interviews.

Findings When appropriately planned and resourced, support worker roles can have a significant effect on practice and service delivery, enhance the work of the LCNS and have a positive effect on patient experience. Support workers create opportunities for service improvement initiatives that would not otherwise be feasible.

Conclusion This study highlights the importance of planning and training to ensure the success of support worker roles.

Cancer Nursing Practice. 14, 1,22-27. doi: 10.7748/cnp.14.1.22.e1147

Correspondence

s.p.brummell@shu.ac.uk

Peer review

This article has been subject to double blind peer review

Conflict of interest

None declared

Received: 26 September 2014

Accepted: 08 December 2014