Oncology Patient Navigator Training: The Fundamentals

Contact Name: 
Mandi Pratt-Chapman
Name of Institution, Organization or Community Where the Project Was Implemented: 
The GW Cancer Institute.
Description of Project Setting: 

The GW Cancer Institute is a division of the GW Cancer Center, a comprehensive hospital-affiliated academic cancer center.

Category: 
Patient Navigation
Subcategory: 
Skills
Training
Target Population: 
Adult
Cancer Site: 
Non-Specific
Project Description: 

Through a collaborative process, the GW Cancer Institute developed the first-ever consensus-based competencies for Oncology Patient Navigators. With the competencies established, the GW Cancer Institute developed a comprehensive competency-based training for Oncology Patient Navigators. The training uses interactive web-based presentations to discuss evidence-based information and case studies to prepare patient navigators to effectively address barriers to care for cancer patients and survivors. To enroll in the course, visit the Online Academy at http://gwcehp.learnercommunity.com/cancer-institute and use enrollment code PNTrain (note, this is case sensitive).

A Guide for Patient Navigators provides a supplement to the Oncology Patient Navigator Training as learners move through the 20-hour, self-paced online course.

Problem or Issue the Project Was Designed to Address or Improve: 

Patient navigators are in need of foundational training to develop core competencies and reduce variability of patient navigation services across settings.

Difficulties Encountered in Planning, Implementing, Evaluating or Sustaining the Project: 
This training was time-intensive to create. With limited staff capacity we are updating content as we are able to do so.
Project Successes: 
The training is available to any health care professional who wishes to become or who is a patient navigator free of charge. Over 1300 patient navigators have enrolled in the training in the first year of its release.
Project Significance: 
This training provides patient navigators with a self-paced, free educational experience to develop national consensus-based core competencies. Providing clear functions in a broad variety of settings can aid in future reimbursement for these critical patient navigation services.
Lessons Learned for Patients, Caregivers and/or Communities: 
Patient navigators should ask for patient navigators who have been trained and exhibit clear role boundaries and competence.
Lessons Learned for Clinicians or Health Care Professionals: 
Patient navigators can access free resources to assess and develop their competency as a patient navigator.
Lessons Learned for Researchers or Additional Research Needed: 
Additional research can assess the impact of this training as well as what additional knowledge and skills patient navigators desire in order to develop additional, enhanced learning products for the field.