How to get oncology certified and experience

  1. Hi Everyone,

    I am currently working as an RN on a rehab unit in a local hospital. Although I love my job, my heart is set on working as an oncology nurse. The truth is that that oncology/hematology was my main reason to pursue nursing. I had a personal experience at a very young age where I was a recipient of a BMT. Ever since then, even after graduating with a bachelor's in biology, i wanted to change my career and get more involved in healthcare and being able to contribute to society.

    I am currently enrolled in a BSN program, so my options will broaden. Meanwhile, I want to get some experience with infusion and become chemo certified. Does anyone have any advice on how I could do something like that?
  2. 2 Comments

  3. by   cboneal
    Hi there, Does your hospital have an oncology unit? If so, your best option is to transfer units so you can get some experience. Once you have at least a thousand hours of oncology experience, you can sit for the OCN certification exam. OCN Certification Most hospital-based oncology units send their nurses for chemotherapy administration training, and you aren't expected to have this training before being hired. If your hospital doesn't have a dedicated oncology unit, do they have an infusion center? This is another place to get oncology experience although I think the inpatient side is a better place to start. Congratulations on wanting to become an oncology nurse - you can't find a better patient population to work with. Make sure you continue to take care of yourself though (exercise, meditation, yoga, whatever) becauseboncology can take an emotional toll. -Cristin, RN-OCN
  4. by   bugbugrn
    Thank you so much for your great advice Christin! I will try that. A transfer may be the best way to try. I am just waiting for an opening now.