Eileen Seltzer, BSN, RN, OCN

Eileen Seltzer, BSN, RN, OCN
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Hematology/Bone Marrow Transplant Program Nurse Navigator

Treatment Philosophy

I grew up in a home surrounded by health care. As a child, my mom taught childbirth classes in our home. As a teen, my father’s job moved us overseas while my mom was getting her Master’s Degree in Health Care Administration. She did her thesis on the Dutch Health Care System. But it wasn’t until we moved back to the United States and my father was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma that I realized I was meant to be a nurse. I went with my father to his chemotherapy appointments where the nurses who cared for him treated him and me like we were their family. It was the little things they did like putting a foot stool and pillow under his feet to make him comfortable because he was too tall for the chemo chair that showed their caring.

I got my BSN at California State University Long Beach in 1997 where I met my husband. My first nursing job was in a medical respiratory unit in Southern California working with young Cystic Fibrosis patients and their families. My passion was oncology so as soon as an opening became available I moved to the Bone Marrow Transplant Oncology Unit. There I worked with an amazing team. You get to know people well when they are in the hospital for 6 weeks going through the transplant process. I still remember fondly my first transplant patient and his wife.

My husband and I moved east when he got a job offer in Pennsylvania. I interviewed at all the major hospitals in the Philadelphia area. I was offered nursing positions at each of them. But when I came to Fox Chase Cancer Center I knew right away that this was a special place. The atmosphere was one of a family. The Nurse Manager I interviewed with made me feel like we had known each other for years. When the interview was completed I realized that I didn’t know how to get back to the main road to get to my new home. (This was before cell phones and GPS were commonplace). The nurse manager said, no problem, I’m going that way, follow me and I will get you going in the right direction.

I took the job here at Fox Chase Cancer Center and have been going in the right direction ever since. I started on the Medical Protocol Unit working with people going through chemotherapy and Phase 1 Clinical Trials. After my 2nd child was born, I transitioned into the nursing float pool and worked on each floor of the hospital caring for patients going through different aspects of their treatment.  After a few years an opportunity came to train in Case Management and learn how to help families with the discharge process transitioning from the hospital to home. I cross trained in the Pain and Palliative Care Program which is another unique feature of Fox Chase that is not found in many other Cancer Centers.

In early 2016, I was given the opportunity to explore the outpatient world of Fox Chase when the position for the Hematology Nurse Navigator became available. This brought me back to what originally got me into nursing. I am blessed to be able to work with such a compassionate, talented team of physicians, nursing, and staff in the Hematology Department and Nurse Navigation. I am grateful for the opportunity to help families as they start their oncology journey as I was helped when my father was diagnosed over 25 years ago. I am blessed to be able to say that 25 years later my father continues to do well.