HOW PATIENTS ARE REFERRED TO THE BREAST CARE NURSES?
The Breast Care Nurses (BCN’s) attend the breast clinics and routinely see patients who are diagnosed with breast cancer. If for some reason a Breast Care Nurse is not in attendance then referrals are made by phone, or letter and direct contact. WHO REFERS PATIENTS TO BCNS AND AT WHAT POINT IN THEIR ILLNESS? Referrals come through at any point along the patient journey from different members of the multi-disciplinary team (MDT). This depends what problems patients are experiencing at the time and can be for a variety of different reasons. For example a District Nurse may notice when doing a home visit that a patient is not coping psychologically or is experiencing body image problems and will refer to the Breast Care Nurses. Often such problems manifest at a later time often when surgery and other treatments have been completed. Referrals come from: Clinic staff, Ward staff, District Nurses, GP’s, Oncology Staff (radiographers, chemotherapy nurses, ward staff), Other Breast Care Nurses