The Impact of COVID-19 Visitor Restrictions on Clinical Cancer Nurses

Amy O'Dea, Rebecca Caulfield, Michael A. Roche

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Objectives: To explore the impact of visitor restrictions on clinical cancer nurses, their roles and duties, and the coping strategies used to address the impact. Data Sources: Semistructured qualitative interviews were conducted through purposive sampling with nurses working in a clinical role within cancer services at the study site for at least 1 year. Interviews were recorded and transcribed. Textual data transcribed from interviews were analyzed for themes using NVivo version 12 software, following Braun and Clarke's six phases of thematic analysis. Conclusion: Visitor restrictions implemented due to COVID-19 had a significant impact on clinical cancer nurses. The study found evidence of moral injury and conflict—within the role of the nurse, the implementation of organizational policies, and nurses' professional identity and personal beliefs. Despite this adversity, nurses remained committed to their clinical practice. Implications for Nursing Practice: Changes to nurses’ roles and the practice environment have potentially significant impact on well-being and retention. To ensure that nurses can continue to provide high-quality nursing care in challenging environments, organizations must minimize this impact. Consistent communication and support activities, including recognizing and responding appropriately to situations, may be used in the reduction of potential moral injury and stress.

Original languageEnglish
Article number151530
Pages (from-to)1-7
Number of pages7
JournalSeminars in Oncology Nursing
Issue number1
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - Feb 2024


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