Oral Chemotherapy: An Evidence-Based Practice Change for Safe Handling of Patient Waste

Temima Oratz

Racheal Ogletree

Margaret Gettis

Brooke Cherven

chemotherapy, antineoplastic drugs, safe handling, evidence-based practice
CJON 2021, 25(3), 272-281. DOI: 10.1188/21.CJON.272-281

Background: Safe handling practices for patient waste have focused on patients receiving IV chemotherapy, but these practices do not address safe handling for patients receiving oral chemotherapy.

Objectives: The aim of this article is to evaluate evidence and formulate best practice recommendations for handling and disposing waste from patients receiving oral chemotherapy.

Methods: A literature search established a framework for the project. For healthcare providers and staff, procedures were established to access biohazard supplies and to follow safe handling of patient waste post–oral chemotherapy administration. Supply cost utilization was evaluated pre- and postimplementation. Staff perceptions were assessed six months after project implementation.

Findings: The cost of supplies per patient day increased minimally. Staff self-reported use of biohazard precautions when handling patients’ waste increased. The majority of staff reported that they had access to supplies and were knowledgeable regarding safe handling procedures six months after this practice change.

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