Pediatric oncology nurses in low- and middle-income countries have limited access to specialized education and clinical training. This is a major impediment for treating children with cancer and contributes to the disparity in survival rates between high- and low-income countries. The International Outreach Nursing Program at St Jude Children’s Research Hospital established full-time nurse educator positions at partner sites throughout Latin America. Experienced nurses were hired as educators; however, they had no formal pediatric oncology education, limited teaching experience, and no mentors as this was a new nursing role in low- and middle-income countries.Objective:
Our objective was to create a regional education center to prepare nurse educators to succeed in this pioneering role.Interventions:
The Latin American Center for Pediatric Oncology Nursing Education was created at Calvo Mackenna Hospital in Santiago, Chile, to provide education, resources, and support to educators. Education resources, including a comprehensive orientation program and courses in chemotherapy and central venous line care, were developed. A 4-week on-site comprehensive educator course and an organized support system were implemented.Results:
Education, resources, and support have been provided to 13 nurse educators representing 7 Latin American countries. The educators have provided pediatric oncology education to more than 1000 nurses.Conclusions:
The center promotes excellence in pediatric oncology nursing by preparing and supporting educators, who in turn educate the entire nursing staff at partner sites.Implications for Practice:
Nurse educators equipped with knowledge and skills can improve the quality of care and ultimately survival of patients throughout Latin America.