Nurse Unit Manager – Cameron Grant
NAME: Cameron Grant
PROFESSIONAL TITLE: Nurse Unit Manager (NUM)
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN IN YOUR ROLE FOR?
I have been in the NUM role just under 12 months; however I have worked in Cancer Services for 9 years
WHERE DO YOU WORK? The Royal Melbourne Hospital- Day Oncology Centre
WHAT DOES YOUR ROLE INVOLVE?
Currently I oversee the day to day operations of the ward. Clinically I help out where required- Team Leader, Chemotherapy planning role and of course work out on the floor with patients! A big component of my role is working towards the safe transition of our patients and staff into the new Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre (VCCC)
HOW DO YOU FIT INTO THE PATIENTS CANCER TREATMENT TEAM?
I lead and guide a quality group of nurses that will provide any expert clinical cancer care you may need in the Day Oncology Centre.
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR ROLE?
The thing I love the most about my role is the influence you can have on those around you. When providing patient care, you can make a meaningful contribution to the quality of life of a patient and their family members. Whilst with fellow staff members, taking the time to teach them and impart knowledge, to then witness them competently incorporating that into everyday practice gives you a great feeling.
ARE THERE ANY CHALLENGES TO YOUR ROLE?
Sometimes too many! The biggest at the moment is ensuring patients get access to timely care. We are treating more patients than ever before. Minimising wait times for our patients remains a key area of focus that we are constantly working hard to achieve.
WHY DO YOU THINK YOUR ROLE IS IMPORTANT FOR CANCER PATIENTS?
The NUM is ultimately responsible for, and sets the standards of care being provided to our patients; including ensuring we provide access to the best available cancer treatment delivery in a safe environment by skilled and competent oncology nurses.
ARE THERE ANY COMMON MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT YOUR ROLE?
I think most people believe the Nurse Unit Manager doesn’t have much patient contact and are always in meetings but I make it a priority to remain a clinical leader and role model, and successfully manage both aspects that come with the role.
WHAT IS THE BIGGEST LESSON YOU HAVE LEARNT IN YOUR CAREER?
You never stop learning. The Oncology field is a forever changing practice, so you need to be prepared to dedicate yourself to ensure your clinical skills and knowledge is up to date.
IF YOU COULD GIVE ONE PIECE OF ADVICE TO CANCER PATIENTS, WHAT WOULD IT BE?
Speak up! Always ask questions if they are on your mind and always let members of your treating team know of any symptoms and/or changes you may be experiencing. All the knowledge we gather will enable us to care for your needs better.
ARE THERE ANY ORGANISATIONS OR USEFUL WEB LINKS YOU RECOMMEND PATIENTS VISIT?
Leukemia Foundation- www.leukaemia.org.au
Myeloma Foundation- myeloma.org.au
Cancer Council- www.cancer.org.au
MacMillian Cancer Support- www.macmillan.org.uk
ANY OTHER ADDITIONAL INFORMATION YOU WOULD LIKE TO ADD:
I can’t believe how quickly time has gone since my very first day on the RMH Inpatient Haematology and Medical Oncology ward! I have been very fortunate to meet a lot of incredible people along the way and look forward to developing my career in this field.