Nursing education highlights breast cancer prevention - Interplast

Nursing education highlights breast cancer prevention

Breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related death among women in the Solomon Islands, with late diagnosis being a key contributor. If detected in its early stages, breast cancer has a much greater chance of being treated effectively.

Interplast has been responding to this need since 2016 by including breast care and breast cancer awareness in its biannual nursing education program, which is delivered at the National Referral Hospital in Honiara, and more recently at a number of clinics and community venues across Honiara.

By emphasising the importance of self-examination and early detection and providing breast care training materials, local nurses are equipped to not only teach women about their role in identifying their own breast lumps, but to also train other nurses and pass on their knowledge.

The Interplast team included Justin Pacey who is a nurse unit manager at The Alfred, Leah Lynch-Rurehe, a breast care nurse and Daisy Sargeant, a nurse educator, both from St Vincent’s Hospital.

This program also includes topics such as nurse leadership and quality improvement.

Justin said one of his objectives for this years’ programs was to unite and empower nurse managers, nurse instructors and clinical nurse consultants to work together to lead change in their clinical areas.

“We aim to broaden their understanding of what leadership is and how good leadership can positively influence the team they’re leading,” he said.

Twenty local nurses participated in the latest program, all of whom were from various specialties including midwifery, emergency, surgical, medical and diabetes management.

Local clinical nurse consultant, Gusto Roberts, said she benefited most from the quality improvement component.

“This training helps me a lot in that it provides me with knowledge and skills on how to improve nursing practice and procedures in my ward,” she said.

The week-long program is generously funded by Rotary District 9810, with a membership of over 1,100 Rotarians across 44 clubs spanning from Port Philip Bay to Melbourne’s outer east.

Breast Cancer Prevention Group
The Interplast volunteer nursing education team award local nurses with certificates of completion.
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