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First Champalimaud Cancer Nurse Conference

The recognition of the vital role that nurses play in modern cancer treatment.

  1. 3.6.2016

    President of Champalimaud Foundation, Leonor Beleza, opened the 1st Champalimaud Cancer Nurse Conference by outlining why we chose to hold this important conference: to recognise the vital role that nurses play in modern cancer treatment. The use and development of advanced technology is inevitable and welcome, but so too is the human element.


    Over these two days, the themes would range from: risk assessment to early diagnosis, the relevance of clinical trials and the need for team work and a multidisciplinary approach, from the classic areas of intervention to the modern challenges in multiple pathologies and in various situations in which care must be provided. Connecting with our recent “Hospital of the Future” talk, special emphasis was put on the ongoing development of including the patient’s own house as part of the therapeutic process. Personalised care was highlighted repeatedly, as was the key concept of treating the person, not the disease.

    Heather Wall, Team Manager for General Surgery at Poole Hospital talked about the role of robotic surgery from a nurse’s point of view, stating, “With the advances in information technology, and robots as well, nurses are becoming more autonomous and the level of education for nurses is also increasing at a fast rate, which has got to be better for the patient outcomes.”

    Head Nurse here at Champalimaud Centre for the Unknown, Alexandra Belchior, spoke enthusiastically about the work done by nurses, highlighting the achievements, challenges and developments over the last five years since the Clinical Centre opened. Togetherness, community and learning through the sharing of knowledge were repeatedly emphasised.

    Regarding the Champalimaud Centre for the Unknown, Janice Jones, a Nurse Practitioner from Poole Hospital, England said, “this environment has got to enrich patient recovery and well-being.”

    Nurses from Portugal were joined by international experts, doctors and even scientists from the Foundation for this truly ground-breaking conference. From presentations, round-table discussions, and of course plenty of opportunity to answer questions from the audience, this was the 1st Champalimaud Cancer Nurse Conference but surely not the last.

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