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Oncology Nursing Society Position

Oncology Nursing: The Application of Cancer Genetics and Genomics Throughout the Oncology Care Continuum

ONF 2013, 40(1), 10-11 DOI: 10.1188/13.ONF.10-11

Advances in the understanding and application of cancer genetics (i.e., single gene hereditary disorders) and cancer genomics (i.e., the identification of multiple genes, DNA sequences, and proteins and their interaction with one another) has dramatically changed the practice and implementation of cancer risk assessment, risk reduction, prevention, screening, diagnosis, therapeutics, and options for personalized health care. High-throughput technologies, such as whole-genome sequencing and exome sequencing, have resulted in a shift in focus from cancer genetics to cancer genomics. Those technologies also have increased the need for oncology nurses to integrate genetic and genomic information into every aspect of oncology nursing care. Oncology nursing practice related to cancer genetics includes two levels, the general oncology nurse (GON) and the advanced practice nurse (APN).

References 

American Nurses Association. (2009). <i>Essentials of genetic and genomic nursing: Competencies, curricula guidelines, and outcome indicators</i> (2nd ed.). Silver Spring, MD: Author.

Greco, K. E., Tinley, S., & Seibert, D. (2012). <i>Essential genetic and genomic competencies for nurses with graduate degrees.</i> Silver Spring, MD: American Nurses Association and International Society of Nurses in Genetics.

Institute of Medicine. (2011). <i>The future of nursing: Leading change, advancing health.</i> Washington, DC: National Academies Press.