Skip navigation Home Patients & visitors Our services Search Help Contact us Terms and conditions Accessibitity Page
You are here:

A-Z services

Clinical nurse specialist (CNS)

Clinical nurse specialists (CNS) work alongside the multi-disciplinary team to provide support and information to people with a cancer diagnosis, as well as their families and carers. They support the patient from the point of diagnosis, throughout the investigations, treatment planning, treatment and ongoing follow-up.  

The role of the CNS is very dependent on recognising individual patient needs, and there is a huge variety in the level  of support needed from patient to patient within this cancer group, due to the often complex treatment pathway.

The CNS needs to have clinical expertise and effective communication skills to oversee and co-ordinate services, personalise care, meet the complex information and  support needs of patients and carers, by balancing compassionate therapeutic relationships with clinical skills.  The CNS acts as key professional, patient advocate, and information giver,  as well as identifying and addressing psychological needs by performing a formal holistic needs assessment.  They will need to work effectively and collaboratively with the MDT, extended hospital teams and primary care.  They are also drivers in enhancing the patient experience, by responding to feedback from patients in both national and local questionnaires. 

The role is constantly evolving in line with local and national cancer agendas.  For example  being  proactive in the peer review process,  avoiding cancer waiting time breaches, identifying length of stay trends and discharge planning.  At present the Recovery Package is in the forefront with CNSs being the drivers in end of treatment summaries, health and wellbeing events,  assessment and careplanning, as well as addressing the longer-term consequences of head and neck cancer.

The CNS is in the unique position to demonstrate to more junior staff  the key values of nursing: care, compassion, competence, communication, courage and commitment. 

Hospital services A-Z

Find support

Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Longfleet Road, Poole, Dorset BH15 2JB. Tel: 01202 665511

© Copyright Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 2019.

Designed and developed by Merchant Marketing Group.