Cancer and its care: For primary health care nurses

The Chronic Disease Management and Health Ageing Program has been funded by the Australian Government Department of Health.

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About the Webinar

This webinar is the first of a series of four webinars for the Chronic Disease Management and Healthy Ageing Program.

The aim of the webinar is to increase primary health care nurses’ knowledge about cancer and its care.

By the end of the webinar, participants should be able to: 

1. Understand the role of primary health care in cancer treatment.

2. Identify what occurs during the acute stage of cancer treatment. 

3. Understand strategies to support patients’ post-treatment/ survivorship.

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Lesley Pugh

Professional Development Officer, Member Services, Australian Primary Health Care Nurses Association (APNA)

After starting as an EN, Lesley completed a Bachelor Degree in Nursing. After raising four children, she commenced General Practice work in 2001 in South Australia and then relocated to Melbourne where she worked as practice nurse, constantly studying and broadening her scope of practice.

Lesley's roles have included Practice Nurse Consultant for a Medicare Local and a Telehealth Support Officer at APNA for the Nursing and Midwifery Consortia Telehealth Project. Lesley then recommenced work back in General Practice and continued her study, completing a Grad. Cert in Nursing Practice in 2017. Her role continues to include educating, motivating, mentoring and being an advocate for nurses in the primary health care setting. Lesley is currently working for APNA in the role of Professional Development Officer, Member Services, and continues to support the Building Nurse Capacity project along with the Chronic Disease Management and Healthy Aging project.

Nicole Kinnane

Project Manager, Australian Cancer Survivorship Centre, A Richard Pratt Legacy, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre

RN, Oncology Certificate, Cert Clinical Research, Grad Dip Psycho-Oncology

Nicole is a project manager for the Australian Cancer Survivorship Centre – A Richard Pratt Legacy. Nicole brings to this role extensive experience in cancer nursing, nursing research and education, patient education and Health Care Professional and consumer information development.  Nicole is also a Nurse Consultant for the Gynaecology Oncology Service at Peter Mac. Providing survivorship consultations and developing survivorship care plans for women at end of treatment are an important element of the model of care provided.  Nicole is committed to improving the outcomes for patients diagnosed with cancer and their families during and after treatment. Her dual roles allow her to implement survivor care recommendations in the clinical setting. Nicole is a committee member of The Cancer Nurses Society of Australia Gynaecology Special Interest Group; she is currently undertaking a Masters of Philosophy through Melbourne Uni investigating the value of post-treatment follow-up care for women with intermediate to high risk endometrial cancer.

Recent publications include

  • Kinnane, N. A., Piper, A., Wiley, G., Nolte, L., Evans, J., & Jefford, M. (2017). Transforming cancer survivorship care: An australian experience. Asia-Pacific journal of oncology nursing, 4(2), 91.
  •  Kinnane, N. A., Piper, A. J., & Jefford, M. (2017). How will cancer survivors use survivorship care plans?. Acta Oncologica, 56(2), 183-189.
  • Nolte, L., Kinnane, N., Lai-Kwon, J., Gates, P., Shilkin, P., & Jefford, M. (2016). The impact of survivorship care planning on patients, general practitioners, and hospital-based staff. Cancer nursing, 39(6), E26-E35.

Jessica Balson

Clinical Nurse Educator – Cancer Services, Western Health

Jessica has been a cancer nurse for six years having worked at the Alfred Hospital, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre and Royal Melbourne Hospital in a variety of areas including haematology, bone marrow transplantation, medical oncology, palliative care, clinical trials, radiotherapy and day therapies as well as intensive care. 

She has completed Graduate Certificates in Oncology/Palliative care and Intensive Care Nursing and is currently undertaking a Masters of Advanced Practice by Research at the University of Melbourne. Since January she has been working as a Clinical Nurse Educator within Cancer Services at Western Health in Melbourne which involves coordinating education for nurses working in the chemotherapy day unit, radiotherapy or in-patient cancer ward as well as facilitating post-graduate education. 

She is also passionate about Indigenous health having spent time working in remote Aboriginal communities in the northern territory. When she is not at work she loves travelling, food and wine and being outdoors.

Meg Rynderman

Cancer Survivor, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre

Meg Rynderman is a survivor of recurrent Hodgkin disease and of hormone positive breast cancer. Treatment for her disease included radiotherapy, high dose chemotherapy, stem cell transplant, bilateral mastectomy & reconstruction.

She volunteers her time as a consumer representative for the Australian Cancer Survivorship Centre at Peter MacCallum, volunteering also for Cancer Council Victoria's Cancer Connect program.

Meg’s 20+ year cancer journey has instilled in her a passion that other cancer survivors should be offered more appropriate support and follow-up care than she experienced in her early years and that cancer should no longer be seen as a one-off incident, but rather a whole-of-life health issue.

She regularly relates her story and the insights gained along the way to Health and Allied Health Care professionals to aid in their understanding of survivorship.

Meg is involved in writing a series of ‘survivor stories’ for the ACSC – a powerful means of offering hope to cancer patients and their families.

Tracy Murphy

Coursework Coordinator Primary Care Nursing, University of Melbourne

Tracy has worked in General Practice since 1990 in Mildura and Ballarat and as a Women’s Health Nurse in Ouyen and at BreastScreen Victoria . She currently coordinates the Graduate Diploma/Certificate in Primary Care Nursing at the Department of General Practice the University of Melbourne.  Tracy is keen to see primary care nurses take on a greater role in supporting people affected by cancer.

Katherine Lane

Head of Cancer Information and Support Services, Strategy & Support, Cancer Council Victoria

Katherine is the Head of Cancer Information and Support Services at Cancer Council Victoria. An oncology nurse by background, Katherine has worked across various hospitals and cancer settings over the past 13 years, including acute inpatient and outpatient settings. Over the last five years, Katherine has specialised in the delivery of supportive care and leads a team 19 experienced staff and oncology nurses to deliver first line support to almost 11,000 people affected by cancer every year via phone, email and face-to-face visits. Katherine and her team are responsible for providing social, emotional and practical support via Cancer Council programs to those who use the service as well as triaging people back to local services within the community. A key focus of Katherine’s role involves the implementation and delivery of supportive care in cancer program initiatives and partnering strategically to design and deliver supportive care services that improve the experience of people affected by cancer.

Katherine holds key roles as Chair of the National 13 11 20 Information and Support Line Sub-Committee and Vice-President of the International Cancer Information Services Group, who are responsible for the delivery of best-practice standards and streamlined services nationally and internationally to drive the development of innovative and responsive service delivery.