Small Film a Big Showcase for Oncology Nursing

TON - September 2016, Vol 9, No 5 - Nursing
Caroline Helwick

San Antonio, TX—Oncology nurses are portrayed as the compassionate, dedicated heroes they truly are in a short documentary-style film, Heroic Hearts: To Be an Oncology Nurse, the Movie, which premiered at the Oncology Nursing Society 41st Annual Congress.

The film, produced by the pharmaceutical company Tesaro, features 3 oncology nurses from Ohio: Sandra Black, RN, OCN, CNLC, of Fairfield Medical Center, Lancaster; Angie Edwards, RN, BSN, OCN, of Mount Carmel West, Columbus; and Sarah Kincaid, MSN, RN, FNP-BC, CNL, of the James Cancer Hospital, Columbus.

As the film explores oncology nursing through these nurses’ seasoned but sensitive eyes, it hits home for nurses everywhere and will certainly inspire the next generation.

The 3 nurses selected for the film have different backgrounds and roles, “but they are all big champions within their practices,” said Grant C. Bogle, Senior Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer for Tesaro. The film explores what brought these individuals to oncology nursing, what keeps them going, and what they strive to achieve with their work.

For Sandra and Angie, family members lost to cancer were the precipitating factors for this career choice. For Sandra, it was her mother-in-law, who suggested before she died approximately 30 years ago, that nursing would be a good fit. For Angie, it was her husband, who died at age 37 years.

The choice was life-changing, they agreed. Sandra said that oncology nursing is in her heart. She is most thankful for her journey in oncology nursing because of the deep connections she has made with patients and families who endure, or fall victim to, this disease.

Helping patients face challenges, not only physical but emotional and spiritual, brings meaning to Sarah’s life as well. Her patients, she believes, “remember how we made them feel.”

And Angie speaks for the resilience of the profession, saying, “We can handle anything that’s thrown at us—with grace.”

Mr Bogle said that the documentary aims to showcase the worthy qualities of all oncology nurses as represented by Sandra, Angie, and Sarah. “It’s to recognize the critical nature of what oncology nurses do each and every day—dedicate their lives to helping patients in one of the most difficult times of their lives.”

“As a company, we are focused on developing transformative therapies to help patients, but without nurses, our treatments simply won’t get to the patient,” Mr Bogle said in an interview. This is especially true in supportive care.

Heroic Hearts is our way of thanking nurses—to recognize them and energize them and say that we are with them on this journey,” he said. “Through Heroic Hearts we hope to drive greater awareness of the sacrifices oncology nurses make every day to ensure their patients are receiving the best care possible.”

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Last modified: September 14, 2016