Justifying oncology nurse navigator roles in Canada: an integrative literature review on quality indicators, evaluation metrics, and measurable patient outcomes




Hartzell, Renee

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Research has demonstrated that patient navigation interventions that have been led by nurse navigators are an effective way of improving continuity of care and the overall quality of care delivery to persons living with cancer. However, Canadian cancer programs struggle to justify the need for more nurse navigator positions. The purpose of this literature review was to explore the patient navigation movement and the known quality indicators and measurable patient outcomes available to measure the impact of implementing patient navigation initiatives that have been led by nurses. The current state of the science examining patient navigation interventions and evaluation metrics was reviewed following the integrative literature review framework. The findings are summarized in five overarching meta-themes: system efficiency, patient satisfaction, healthcare usage, return on investment, and survival. Oncology nurse navigators engender positive outcomes in oncology care. The identification of quality ambulatory oncology nursing indicators, evaluation metrics, and measurable patient outcomes may help facilitate discussions concerning the value of oncology nurse navigators and provide organizations with the tools to measure the impact of implementing nurse navigators. Patient navigation is understudied and more nursing research is needed to define oncology nursing navigator interventions and associated outcomes.



nurse navigator, indicators, oncology, outcomes, quality, patient navigation