Pediatric Oncology Nurses’ Experiences With Prognosis-Related Communication

Document Type


Publication Date



Oncology Nursing Society

Source Publication

Oncology Nursing Forum

Source ISSN



Objectives: To examine nurses’ experiences of prognosis-related communication (PRC) with parents of children with cancer.

Sample & Setting: Cross-sectional, correlational study in the pediatric oncology setting involving 316 members of the Association of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Nurses.

Methods & Variables: Online survey regarding individual nurse factors, PRC, interprofessional collaboration, moral distress, and perceived quality of care.

Results: Nurses strongly agreed that prognostic disclosure is critical for decision making, but they are challenged in determining their role. Nurses with more years of experience and training in PRC, those working in an outpatient setting, and those with higher levels of nurse–physician collaboration reported more positive experiences with PRC. Positive experiences with PRC and collaboration were significantly associated with higher nurse-perceived quality of care and reduced nurse moral distress.

Implications for Nursing: Nurses should work to be active participants in the process of PRC by collaborating with physician colleagues. When nurses sense that prognostic discussions have been absent or unclear, they should feel confident in approaching physician colleagues to ensure parent understanding and satisfaction with communication.


Oncology Nursing Forum, Vol. 45, No. 3 (May 2018): 327-337. DOI.