Research Working Group - Biographies

Wendy OldenmengerWendy Oldenmenger, The Netherlands (co-Chair)
Wendy Oldenmenger is a nurse and health scientist. She works as a nursing researcher in pain and palliative care at the Department of Medical Oncology, and is the coordinator of oncology nursing research at the Erasmus MC Cancer Institute where she stimulates and supports nurses and nurse practitioners with their research. Besides this, she works as a lecturer at the Rotterdam University of Applied Science. She completed her PhD in 2012 on research to improve cancer-related pain management. Her recent research topic is to improve the monitoring of the pain treatment in cancer outpatients, breakthrough cancer pain, and pain assessment/outcome measurement. Wendy is a Board Member (Research) of EONS.
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Mary WellsMary Wells, UK (co-Chair)
Mary is the Professor of Cancer Nursing Research and Practice at the NMAHP Research Unit at the University of Stirling. She has co-chaired the EONS Research Working Group since 2012, and was an Executive Board member for six years between 2009 and 2015. She is an experienced cancer nurse with a clinical background in radiotherapy, oncology and head and neck cancer. Mary’s research focuses on understanding and improving the psychosocial and physical consequences of cancer and its treatment, and she is particularly interested in the development and evaluation of nurse-led interventions. She is experienced in qualitative and quantitative research methods, and her PhD investigated the role of context in randomized trials of complex interventions. Mary has advisory roles with several cancer charities, including Macmillan Cancer Support, Throat Cancer Foundation and She is a member of the National Cancer Research Institute’s Psychosocial Oncology and Survivorship Clinical Studies Group.
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Melanie CharalambousMelanie Charalambous, Cyprus
Dr Melanie Charalambous, RN, PhD (Oncology Nursing), has lifelong experience in nursing education and has worked in the Nursing School of Cyprus and in the nursing department of Cyprus University of Technology (TEPAK) as a Scientific Nursing Staff member. She has been a nurse educator in the Educational Sector of Nursing Services at the Ministry of Health since 2013. Her responsibilities concern continuing professional development of nurses and the coordination of short and long courses in various nursing fields. She is also an external lecturer on the MSc in Oncology Nursing at Cyprus University of Technology (Nursing Department). She worked as a nurse at Bank of Cyprus Oncology Centre (BOCOC) and she specialised in stoma care at St Savvas Cancer Hospital, in Athens, Greece. She is a research associate within the nursing department of Cyprus University of Technology and is involved in nursing research, with a specific interest in oncology nursing and palliative care, including the management of symptomatology in patients with cancer and their quality of life. She has also made an advisory contribution to the national strategy for cancer prevention and management in Cyprus.
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Amanda DruryAmanda Drury, Ireland
Amanda is a Health Research Board Doctoral Research Fellow in the School of Nursing and Midwifery, Trinity College Dublin. She is a registered general nurse, with clinical experience in radiation and medical oncology settings. Amanda holds a BSc in Nursing, an MSc in Cancer Care and Postgraduate Certificates in Statistics and Innovation and Enterprise. She is experienced in quantitative and qualitative research methods. Amanda’s PhD research examines colorectal cancer survivors’ experiences of follow-up care in the Irish healthcare system, and its potential impact upon their quality of life outcomes. In her role as a PhD candidate, she also lectures and supervises students on undergraduate and postgraduate programmes in the School of Nursing and Midwifery, Trinity College Dublin.
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Nikolaos EfstathiouNikolaos Efstathiou, UK
Nikolaos is a lecturer at the University of Birmingham. He is a nurse with experience in critical care nursing. He has been an EONS member for almost 20 years and was one of the first recipients of the EONS Novice Researcher (1999) and Research Travel (2013) awards. His research focuses on palliative and end-of-life care. He is experienced in conducting research using qualitative and quantitative methods and is an expert in Delphi technique. He has also published a number of systematic reviews. His PhD was on desired oncology services by service users and providers in Greece. He holds an honorary contract with Connected Palliative Care at Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust, a service providing 24/7 coordinated end-of-life care for patients and their carers. He is also an Adjunct Professor at the University of Ottawa, School of Nursing and a member of their Nursing Palliative Care Research & Education Unit.
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Carole FarrellCarole Farrell, UK
Carole is currently a Lecturer in Clinical Practice at The University of Bolton, UK. She teaches and supervises postgraduate students on the MSc Advanced Practice, MSc Clinical Practice, and MSC Physician Associate courses. She is passionate about advanced practice roles, nurse-led clinics, research, and improving patients’ experiences. She has over 30 years’ clinical experience in oncology, including clinical nurse specialist and nurse clinician roles. She developed several nurse-led clinics to improve patients’ experiences and continuity of care for people with breast cancer. Her PhD was an exploration of oncology specialist nurses’ roles, and an ethnographic multi-centre study of chemotherapy nurse-led clinics in the UK. Following this she worked as a post-doctoral research fellow at The Christie NHS FT and a part-time teaching fellow at The University of Manchester. This involved working closely with clinical colleagues to increase research awareness and enhance evidence-based clinical practice through research, audits and service evaluation. Her current research study: Developing a Patient Reported Experience Measure for patients with secondary breast cancer (PREM-SBC) is almost complete. Previous studies have included:

  • Exploring the impact of chemotherapy on patients ≥65 years and their partners/caregivers
  • Cancer-related information needs and treatment decision-making experiences of people with dementia in England: a multi-perspective qualitative study
  • Assessing the prevalence and severity of chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy
  • Clarifying the cluster of symptoms associated with chemotherapy-induced nausea
  • Identifying the concerns of women undergoing chemotherapy

She is a consultant editor of Cancer Nursing Practice. She writes regularly for publication, and is keen to help nurses to develop their writing skills and publish their own work.

Paz Fernández-OrtegaPaz Fernández-Ortega, Spain
Dr Fernández-Ortega is the Nursing Research Coordinator at the cancer center of the Institute Català d’ Oncologia and has worked in Oncology since 1985. She is also an associate professor at Barcelona University where she teaches cancer nursing and research methods for undergraduate and postgraduate students. She was an EONS Board Member from 1999 to 2006 and was the recipient of the EONS Lifetime Achievement Award in 2014. Paz earned her PhD with honors, cum-laude with a special mention in Nursing Sciences and she has a Master’s in Clinical Psychology. Her expertise includes Nursing Cancer Care – Oncology; Nursing Education; Nursing Research; Quality of Life and Symptoms Management and Psycho-social support. She is currently the chair of the Education Study Group of MASCC and belongs to the Cancer Care Node of the Joanna Briggs Institute.
ORCID SCOPUS Author ID: 8371305800
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Grigorios KotronoulasGrigorios Kotronoulas, UK
Dr Grigorios Kotronoulas is a cancer nurse and post-doctoral Research Fellow at the University of Strathclyde, with three years of clinical and 12 years of research experience in the area of cancer care and patient and families support. Grigorios holds an MSc in Oncology Nursing and Palliative Care, and his PhD investigated alterations and interrelations in sleep quality in breast cancer patient-caregiver dyads. Grigorios has been involved in over 20 nurse-led research projects, while he has a strong background in quantitative research and systematic literature reviews. His research interests include the assessment and management of sleep disorders and insomnia in cancer care; supportive care needs assessment/management interventions; supportive self-management; dyadic (patient-caregiver) nursing care; implementation of patient-reported outcome measures in clinical practice; and utilisation of digital health solutions in cancer care. He is a member of the UK Oncology Nursing Society and British Sleep Society.

Elisabeth PatirakiElisabeth Patiraki, Greece
Professor Elisabeth Patiraki worked clinically at St Savvas Cancer Hospital for 17 years. Since 1998 holds a position at the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Department of Nursing, and recently is the vice president of the faculty. She currently leads the MSc “Oncology Nursing and Palliative Care” and is a coordinator at the Interdisciplinary MSc “Organizing and Managing Supportive and Palliative Care of Chronically ill Patients”. Elisabeth is a volunteer member of the steering committee and the director of Education and Research, at the Palliative Care Unit “Galilee” since 2009.She served as the first president of Hellenic Oncology Nursing society (1995-2004) and as a member of EONS board of directors (1997-2001). Her combined clinical experience with educational and research activities are focusing on caring, symptom management, patient education and patient and family palliative care needs.
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Marlies PetersMarlies Peters, The Netherlands
Marlies Peters has been a registered nurse since 1982. She has worked in various fields of healthcare and from 1994 onwards she has worked at the department of Medical Oncology of the Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Center, The Netherlands. She graduated at the University of Amsterdam as Master of Science (Evidence Based Practice) in 2005 and completed her PhD on fatigue in patients with non-curable cancer and their partners in 2015. Her current position is nursing expert and senior researcher. One of her main tasks is promoting evidence-based practice in daily (nursing) practice within the clinical setting (both the ward and a day-care unit). She stimulates and supports young (cancer) nurses with research issues. She’s involved in several projects which aim to improve care for older patients with cancer.

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