From early detection through the treatment, nurses at Kupferle Comprehensive Breast Center at Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Fort Worth ensure patients receive the comprehensive and individual care they need when diagnosed with a breast disease. Their efforts helped the center earn national accreditation from the American College of Surgeons for its demonstrated commitment to meeting the highest quality breast-care standards.
Nurses play a key role, because we are a pivot point for accessing any specialty care, said Sue Shields, MBA, RN, NEA-BC, director of cancer services at the hospital, adding that nurses provide education and appropriate resources for patients and families.
The Kupferle center also recently was recognized by the American College of Radiology as a Breast Imaging Center of Excellence. It offers 3D screening mammography to all patients, which often can reduce the need for return visits for further diagnostics, and provides screening mammograms through the hospitals mobile medical program, called Wellness for Life.
Wellness for Life was one of the key components of the accreditation, said Rosemary Galdiano, BSN, RN, MPH, OCN, manager of the Texas Health Wellness for Life mobile health program.
Nurse navigator roleDana McGuirk, RN
Having nurse navigators also played a part in the accreditation. The breast program has provided a nurse navigator since 2003 to help with patient education and communication. Dana McGuirk, BSN, RN, breast cancer navigator at the hospital, meets with an average of 25 to 40 patients diagnosed with breast cancer per month.
I help them understand what to expect as next steps in the process and what other community resources they can turn to for support, McGuirk said. I make it personal to the patients needs.
She sometimes includes explanations on post-op care and planned treatments after surgery.
Patients do better when they know the expectations and resources and if they have somebody to turn to when they dont think the doctor has time, McGuirk said.
The hospital opened the breast center in the late 1980s to provide specialized services for breast care. The hospital treats about 500 breast cancer patients annually, and the breast center
Serves up to 12,000 patients annually, primarily adult women but also men. The center screens people, starting at 35-40 years, according to American Cancer Society guidelines.
Mobile Unit brings mammograms to the communityRosemary Galdiano, RN
Three Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Fort Worth mobile units travel around several northern Texas counties providing screening mammograms, clinical breast exams and complete well womens physicals by a nurse practitioner, Monday through Saturday, serving about 4,000 people annually.
The mobile program began in 1993 and has grown to include screenings for other cancers, not only at community centers but also at businesses and schools. Screening exams take no more than 20 minutes.
We are dedicated to improving the health of the community, said Galdiano. The Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex is a diverse population.
Wellness for Life prides itself on offering culturally competent care, including the services of onboard interpreters. The mobile units eliminate transportation issues that cause patients to delay screenings.
We are able to break barriers to access to care, Galdiano said. People feel more comfortable accessing the hospital system by going into a mobile unit parked at their grocery store.
Earning full accreditation from the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers requires dedication to excellence and a commitment to quality breast standards. Shields shared her tips for meeting the rigorous standards.
Develop an interdisciplinary team to direct and ensure the quality of the comprehensive services offered. The team includes nurses, physicians, genetic counselors, social workers, pastoral care, dietitians and palliative care.
Provide education appropriate to the individual patients needs. A masters-prepared nurse educator operates the Cancer Resource Center.
Offer nurse navigator services to help patients through their cancer journey.
For more information
For more information, visit www.FACS.org/Quality- programs/NAPBC/Accreditation/Application.