Date of Conferral



Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)




Deborah Lewis


Patients undergoing chemotherapy treatments for cancer often experience adverse side effects, including cognitive deficits. These deficits impact the patient's ability to communicate effectively with their oncology provider. Ineffective communication can adversely affect patient outcomes and decrease patient-provider satisfaction. The resulting poor communication can contribute to poor patient outcomes. This systematic literature review focused on assistive communication tools that could be used in an outpatient oncology setting to improve patient-provider communication. The literature review findings led to the development of a resource for providers that includes 15 communication tools that can be used to assess and improve communication in cancer care. Initially 4, 533 articles were identified using the search terms; cancer patient/providers, communication tools, chemo brain, and improving/ineffective communications. Articles were selected for inclusion that included communication tools, which assisted oncology providers in improving cancer care. Articles were excluded if they were not specific to cancer patients and did not contain communication tools. Analysis of the systematic review of the literature utilized Bandolier's hierarchy levels of evidence. The Health Promotion Model serves as the theoretical framework to guide the project. Oncology providers that utilized communication tools with patients found an 116% improvement in documentation of symptoms, adverse effects, and corresponding medical management compared to providers who did not use communication tools. Implementation of communication tools in outpatient oncology settings can result in a positive social change in the patient-provider relationship during cancer treatment.