For Myeloma Awareness week at the end of June we wanted to highlight the role of the myeloma clinical nurse specialist. As our CNS report earlier this year demonstrated, access to the support of a CNS is sometimes not available for patients, so we wanted to draw more attention to the work that you do and, most importantly, to the impact that you have. We called on Nursing Advisory Panel member and myeloma CNS, Andie Guy, to talk about her role and how she helps patients live with myeloma. Andie's blog was the second most popular social media post we shared during Myeloma Awareness Week, reaching 13,911 people:
'As a Clinical Nurse Specialist and Stem Cell Transplant Coordinator specialising in the care of people with myeloma and related plasma cell disorders, each day is completely different and virtually impossible to plan for!
My colleague and I are the keyworkers for a population of around 500 myeloma patients who can contact us at any time, whether on or off treatment. This together with the variety of multi-disciplinary, clinical and nurse-led activities we are involved in with our day care and inpatients present a wide variety of roles and challenges, all of which are directed entirely by the emerging needs of patients, so a key attribute to being a good CNS is the ability to constantly juggle tasks and re-prioritise!
Professionally speaking, myeloma is a dynamic haematological sub-specialty to work in presently. Significant research activity in the past decade in particular, has resulted in new drug therapies which have greatly changed the way in which myeloma is managed and our understanding of the complexity of the genetics of this disease is ever increasing.
Whilst the search for a cure goes on, for many patients, research findings implemented in practice have resulted in improved survival and a very real opportunity for people to ‘live with’ myeloma. It is an important aspect of my role to convey this and to broker ways in which patients can be empowered to live their life as fully as possible.'
If you have a story to share or would like to tell us how you make an impact on patients, please get in touch on firstname.lastname@example.org!