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Novel Approaches

Oral Chemotherapy Adherence: A Novel Nursing Intervention Using an Electronic Health Record Workflow

German Rodriguez
Minerva A. Utate
George Joseph
Thelma St. Victor
CJON 2017, 21(2), 165-167 DOI: 10.1188/17.CJON.165-167

In the ambulatory care setting, chemotherapy regimens have become increasingly complex with the combination of induction treatments and oral medications. Nurses at one cancer center implemented an oral adherence tracking documentation system in the electronic health record (EHR). Oncology nurses assessed and monitored adherence to oral chemotherapy at each clinical encounter and during telephone calls and then documented findings in the EHR. After implementing this new standardized approach, adherence rates were captured as a metric for the organization.


  • Poor adherence to oral chemotherapy may lead to loss of treatment efficacy, increased toxicity, and increased hospital use and stays, all of which increase healthcare costs.
  • EHR oral adherence–tracking tools are beneficial to patients and oncology nurses.
  • Initial oral adherence pilot data showed improvement in adherence rates but inconsistencies in adoption of the EHR workflow by all disease management groups.

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