My role is to coordinate care for children with central nervous system tumors, provide clinical care to patients and families, and also provide support during surgical admission, chemotherapy, and radiation. I also serve as the part-time Neurofibromatosis (NF) Nurse Coordinator and enjoy helping families connect with our comprehensive NF Team.
I especially enjoy providing children and families with anticipatory guidance as they navigate the complex treatments offering hope and compassion. Teaching is my passion! I truly love teaching newly diagnosed families about their child’s disease, interacting with the children, and empowering families to feel comfortable caring for their child and anticipating their supportive care needs.
My area of specialty is Neuro Oncology/ Neurofibromatosis Type 1. I have been an oncology nurse for over 23 years and find each day filled with the hope for a cure and the possibility to make a difference.
I have co-authored an article that focuses on MIBG and nursing challenges, and have also done a poster and paper presentation on side effects during proton radiation. My research interests are radiation side effects, and family coping styles.
Selected Publications, Honors and Professional Activities
Awards and honors
2008-2009, Student Nurses of Pennsylvania, Lifetime Honorary Member
2004, Sigma Theta Tau
Editorial and academic positions
Editorial board, Pediatric Nursing
Professional Consultant- SNAP- Student Nurses Association of Pennsylvania
Adjunct Clinical Faculty - Nursing of Children Acute/Chronic Nurse Practitioner Graduate program; University of Pennsylvania
2007-2008, Education Committee, Association of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Nurses
2007, Root Cause Analysis Committee, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
Inpatient Nursing Leadership Committee
Memberships in professional organizations
Association of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Nurses (APHON)
Brophy P, Schmus C, Balistreri L. Nursing challenges and the MIBG patient. J Pediatr Oncol Nurs. 2004 Jan;21(1):9-15. Cited in PubMed; PMID 15058401. Read the abstract
Posters and presentations
Schmus C, Pollack R, Quillen J, Goodsell C. Circle of care: supportive care issues in the pediatric brain tumor patient [poster presentation]. Association of Pediatric Oncology Nursing 31st Annual Conference; 2007 Oct 14-16; Milwaukee, WI.
- Education and Training
Board Certified Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (ANCC)Certified Pediatric Oncology Nurse (CPON)PALS certified
BSN - Villanova University, Villanova, PA
MSN - University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
- Titles and Academic Titles
Neuro-Oncology Nurse Practitioner
Nurse Coordinator, Neurofibromatosis Program
- Conditions Treated
- Centers and Programs
- Research Interests
Clinical toxicities of treatment in children with malignant CNS tumors
Radiation/proton therapy side effects
Mentoring/teaching new nurses and nurse practitioners