HYBRID EVENT: You can participate in person at Boston, Massachusetts, USA or Virtually from your home or work.

7th Edition of Nursing World Conference

October 16-18, 2023 | Boston, Massachusetts, USA

October 16 -18, 2023 | Boston, Massachusetts, USA
NWC 2023

Emery Bergey

Speaker at  Nursing World Conference 2023 - Emery Bergey
H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center,Tampa, FL , United States
Title : Using virtual reality for anxiety relief in oncology patients during initial chemotherapy treatment


Background: Patients often experience significant anxiety and fear associated with their first chemotherapy treatment. Nurses in an NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center piloted an evidence-based project to provide an immersive virtual reality (VR) experience with the goal of reducing anxiety due to distressing stimuli and providing comfort to patients.
Methods: Nurses provided new patients receiving Cycle 1, Day 1 of their chemotherapy regimen with the State-Trait-Anxiety Inventory Scale short version (STAIS-5) after their initial pre-treatment education. Patients participated in an eight-minute immersive VR experience using the TRIPP VR app and the Oculus VR headset. The program focused on mindful awareness and breathing techniques. After viewing the video, patients completed the STAIS-5 questionnaire to reassess their state anxiety and provided qualitative feedback in a comment field.
Results: Twenty-five surveys were collected from March 2021 until February 2023. Mean scores on the STAIS-5 decreased from pre-to post-intervention on four measures: feeling upset (1.5-1.2), frightened (1.3-1.2), nervous (2.7-2) and jittery (2-1.3). Fifty percent of patients showed improvement in feeling nervous and jittery, while 30% reported feeling less upset. Comments from patient surveys showed common themes of feeling relaxed and calm (30%), feeling as though the intervention was helpful (30%), and that it was a good distraction (20%). Sixty percent of participants stated that they had a positive experience with VR.
Conclusions: The results of this evidence-based pilot project demonstrated that VR-based mindfulness applications are a feasible, holistic, non-pharmacologic modality that may be used to provide anxiety relief during infusions. The findings further support the integration of technology into oncology care.

Audience Take Away:

  • After this presentation, participants will be equipped with the knowledge they need to develop and implement technology-based interventions in clinical practice.
  • Understanding specific, mindfulness-based applications can assist healthcare providers with suggesting unique interventions to patients that may reduce the side effects of their treatment, and  that can be done in their own home. 
  • Offering non-pharmacologic symptom management options supports a healing environment. Gaining information about holistic modalities of care will be beneficial for providers, as they can promote these practices to improve the culture of caring in their own organizations.


Emery Bergey is a Clinical Specialist for ambulatory services at Moffitt Cancer Center. She received her MSN in Nursing Education from Chamberlain University, and has attained certifications in oncology and holistic nursing. She completed an externship at MD Anderson Cancer Center during her studies, and has worked in various clinical positions, including inpatient oncology as a staff nurse, and as a case management nurse in radiation oncology. During this time, she found her passion in proton therapy. She places an emphasis on providing holistic, patient-centered care through the cancer continuum, and advocating for the health and well-being of healthcare providers.