Evaluation of the novice registered nurse in developing capability in the clinical setting of oncology

Mrs Jessica Hammersley1,2

1UTAS, Hobart, AUS, 2Royal Hobart Hospital, Tasmanian Health Service, Hobart, AUS


The role of the oncology nurse is varied and diverse from the care of the neutropaenic septic patient to community cancer prevention and detection strategies. The diverse nature of this specialised field requires the registered nurse to have specialised knowledge and the capability to safely care for and manage patient assessment, patient education, supportive care, symptom management and coordination of care.

To help understand these expectations, this qualitative research design sought to explore the capability and role of the novice registered nurse and to develop an understanding of what is being evaluated by mentors practicing in the area of oncology. The research further sought to explore the relationship between postgraduate studies and the capability of registered nurses. It is anticipated that the findings of this study will inform mentors of novice registered nurses’ in the clinical practice area of oncology to support and facilitate capability in the postgraduate nursing student while improving patient experiences and outcomes.


Jessica Hammersley is a Lecturer in Nursing for the University of Tasmania and a registered nurse at the Royal Hobart Hospital, specialising in the area of oncology. After completing her Masters in Nursing and Honours research, the area of cancer care in adolescents and young adults in rural settings has become her area of focus.