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Open Access Article

Oncology Nurses' Use of National Comprehensive Cancer Network Clinical Practice Guidelines for Chemotherapy-Induced and Febrile Neutropenia

Anita Nirenberg
Nancy K. Reame
Kenrick D. Cato
Elaine L. Larson
ONF 2010, 37(6), 765-773 DOI: 10.1188/10.ONF.765-773

Purpose/Objectives: To describe oncology nurses' use of National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) clinical practice guidelines for chemotherapy-induced neutropenia (CIN) and febrile neutropenia (FN).

Design: Cross-sectional survey design; descriptive, correlational analysis.

Setting: E-mail invitation to Web-based survey.

Sample: Random sample of 309 Oncology Nursing Society (ONS) members with e-mail addresses who provide care to adult patients receiving chemotherapy.

Methods: The investigator-developed Neutropenia Oncology Nurses Survey™ was used. Descriptive tests compared respondents' personal and professional characteristics to those of general ONS members; nonparametric chi-square and Kruskal-Wallis tests were used to correlate respondents' survey subscale scores with demographic data. Significant associations were entered into multiple logistic regression models.

Main Research Variables: The Neutropenia Oncology Nurses Survey's subscales measured subjective norm, attitude, perceived competence and confidence, perceived barriers, and use of NCCN clinical practice guidelines for CIN and FN.

Findings: Response rate of nurses who opened the survey was 50%. Most practiced in community versus academic centers. Eighty percent reported using the NCCN clinical practice guidelines for CIN and FN. Respondents were more likely to use clinical practice guidelines when they were expected to by physician and nurse colleagues, they perceived fewer barriers, or they held advanced oncology certification.

Conclusions: This study was the first to assess oncology nurses' reported use of NCCN clinical practice guidelines for CIN and FN. It also demonstrated the feasibility of partnering with ONS for Web-based survey research.

Implications for Nursing: The findings give insight into work-place barriers to evidence-based practice in various settings. Expanding dissemination and implementation of clinical practice guideline recommendations will support the development of oncology nursing standards for risk assessment, management, and patient and family education in CIN and FN.

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