The EONS Board acts in the capacity of trustees and conducts the affairs of the European Oncology Society (EONS) in accordance with the policies determined by the Members and the Advisory Council.
President Virpi Sulosaari (Finland) Virpi graduated as a registered nurse in 1993, later specialising in hematology nursing. She joined the academic community after working as a registered nurse for over 10 years, mainly in hematology and cancer departments. Virpi did her masters and doctoral degree in nursing science at the University of Turku, Finland. Currently, she is a principal lecturer in the Professional Master School of Health and Well-being at Turku University of Applied Sciences, Finland and is also a post-doctoral researcher in University of Turku. Virpi is leader of research group “Advancing Supportive Cancer and Palliative Care (CARE)” in Turku UAS. Shes has several international projects, mainly in the field of education and training in oncology and advanced practice. Her fields of expertise are related to cancer nursing, palliative care and under- and postgraduate nursing education and research.
President-Elect Helena Ullgren (Sweden) Helena works as a nurse at Karolinska Comprehensive Cancer Center, Sweden. Apart from clinical work, she has a position as a leader of research and development. She has worked within cancer care since 1995, in different positions, both in- and outpatient care. Helena’s PhD focused on integration and quality of care, and her special interests are symptom management, healthcare systems and patient safety. Since December 2017 she has been a passionate member (later Co-chair) of the EONS Advocacy Working Group. One of the things she is very proud of is the work aiming to improve patient safety across Europe, for instance impacting the EU to develop better safety guidelines for handling hazardous cancer drugs. Helena wants to work to achieve further recognition of cancer nurses and the importance of developing advanced cancer nursing roles.
Past-President Johan de Munter (Belgium) Johan is currently working as a nurse manager at the University Hospital Ghent Cancer Center. He has been a registered nurse in oncology-haematology since 1999, was a member and board member of the Flemish society of cancer nurses, is a member of BHS nurses’ group and an individual member of EONS since entering the profession. He specialised and obtained a postgraduate degree in pain management and continued his studies with a postgraduate degree in oncology. In 2005, he transferred to continue in a nurse consultant role oncology/haematology/stem cell transplant and has since expanded his expertise in healthcare provision and patient education, supportive care needs, adolescents and young adults with cancer, transition and survivorship care with a focus on evidence-based cancer nursing, quality of care, advocacy and communication. He continued to specialise and completed a postgraduate certificate in Teenage/Young Adult Cancer Care at Coventry University in the UK, and later a postgraduate degree in leadership. Johan is currently a board member in the Majinhuis, a community support home for people affected by cancer. He is also a lecturer in various postgraduate courses for nurses and allied healthcare professionals. He is co-chair of the Flemish strategic AYA movement advisory group, an active member of the Belgian Haematology Society nurses committee, a member of the SIOP Europe AYA Committee, and a member of the Belgian Federal Council of Nursing. After several roles in the European Oncology Nursing Society, he became the President of the organisation in January 2021 to June 2023 and is committed to continue enhancing the field of nursing as EONS Past President.
Board Member/EONS Treasurer Matthew Fowler (UK) Matt graduated as a registered nurse from the university of Birmingham in 1997; he later went on to complete specialist cancer nurse training at the Royal Marsden hospital in 2000 and has continued to work in haematology and oncology nursing for the last 23 years. Matt has an MSc in Nursing and has recently embarked on doctoral studies at Duke University in North Carolina. Matt is passionate about advanced practice in cancer nursing and currently works on a triage assessment unit for both haematology and oncology patients at a cancer centre in the East Midlands. Matt has a particular interest in the management of low-risk febrile neutropenia as well as cancer associated thrombosis. Matt undertakes nurse-led clinics in both colorectal oncology and thrombosis and is a qualified non-medical prescriber of both SACT and supportive medicines as well as blood products. Matt frequently visits Palestine to support teaching of post graduate students at Bethlehem university as well as support medical aid missions to the Gaza strip.
Board Member Merel van Klinken (Netherlands) Merel van Klinken graduated as a nurse in 2006. She has been working as a registered oncology nurse since 2009. She has about 15 years workexpericence in a dutch specialized cancer centre as a palliative care nurse and an oncology nurse. Currently Merel is woking as a nursing specialist in a cancer rehabilitation centre. She holds an MSc in nursing sciences and is looking to improve the quality of palliative care in her own work setting and in the Netherlands as a whole. She’s passionate about safety for patients and nursing staff and building resilience among young cancer nurses. Merel is a member of the EONS Advocacy Working Group and is a Board Member since February 2021.
Board Member Amanda Drury (Ireland) Amanda is a Registered General Nurse, and has been working in cancer care since 2008 in medical and radiation oncology. She is an Associate Professor in General Nursing at the School of Nursing, Psychotherapy and Community Health, Dublin City University. She obtained her PhD, MSc, PG Diploma, and BSc from Trinity College Dublin. Her research focuses on the health and well-being of people affected by cancer and their families, and the development of complex interventions to address the unmet needs of people who are affected by cancer and chronic illness. She has been a member of the EONS Board since 2019, and is a member of the European Cancer Mission Board.
Board Member Wendy McInally (UK) I have built a comprehensive portfolio around children and young people with cancer which covers practice, education, and research. I am a widely recognised cancer nursing specialist and have played leading roles in developing and implementing many best practice initiatives. Currently I work for the Open University (OU) as the Associate Head of Research and Knowledge Exchange. The OU is a public research university and the largest university in the UK for undergraduate education and one of the world’s leading universities. As a previous Macmillan Cancer Nurse (UK charity provider for people living with cancer), I have a deep understanding of the ongoing need for professional education and training to support evidence-based care delivery, along with Research, Knowledge Exchange, and Scholarship. In supporting healthcare professionals caring for people living with and beyond cancer, I strive to encourage the introduction of innovative education, research, and practice initiatives. My own areas of interest over the past few years have been around the experiences of teenagers and young people living with melanoma and their significant other. I was the first nurse in the UK to secure a TYAC Research grant. I have been a member of the CCLG/TYAC for over 25 years and the Society of International Oncology of Paediatrics (SIOP), and as such I am ideally placed to collaborate with colleagues from across Europe, continuing to develop cancer research, education and practice initiatives. I have been a member of EONS since 2013. During that time, I successfully secured two leadership scholarships and PhD writing retreat through EONS. I became a member of the EWG in November 2018 and Co- Chair December 2020. In January 2021 I became an Executive Board member of EONS and Led the European College for Cancer Nurses though its development and pilot stage. I have successfully led the e-sessions for nurses delivered by the European School of Oncology (ESO) since 2018, and serve on the advisory board for ESO, regularly meeting with them to discuss and promote cancer education for nurses and other healthcare professionals. I am also a member for Accredited Council Oncology in Europe (ACOE).
Board Member – Young Cancer Nurses: Nikolina Dodlek (Croatia) Nikolina has been an MSn cancer nurse since 2010, working as unit manager manager of the sub-department for oncology in University Hospital Center Osijek, in the Inpatient Unit . Since 2019, she has also been working at the J.J.Strossmayer University of Osijek, Croatia, on Cathedra for nursing and palliative care. During this period, she attained her bachelor degree in nursing and, in 2017, her Master’s diploma in nursing science, and is a PhDc at Cyprus University of Technology since September 2022. Nikolina is a Secretary, Co-founder and Executive Board Member of Croatian Oncology Nursing Society. During 2020, in collaboration and the support of the National Society, she established a Young Cancer Nurses (YCN) Network in Croatia, and started education for young cancer nurses, admitted and approved by the Croatian Nursing Council. In December 2020, she was elected as EONS YCN Co-Chair. In May 2021, she was elected as an EONS Board Member (Young Cancer Nurse), and also in June 2023 as EONS CWG Chair. She is ECO young cancer professionals Steering Committee member . She is involved in various projects, EU, Erasmus and several others, with passion for research focused on wellbeing of oncology nurses and improvement of quality cancer care.
Board Member Gülcan Bağçivan (Turkey) Gülcan is a Registered Nurse and has been working in cancer care since 2003 in medical oncology. She is an Associate Professor in Medical Nursing at the School of Nursing, Koç University, Istanbul/Turkiye. She obtained her PhD, MSc, and BSc from Gülhane Military Medical Academy, School of Nursing, Ankara/Turkiye. She also has a second master’s in Epidemiology from Hacettepe University, Ankara/Turkiye. Her research focuses on cancer nursing and palliative care. She has been a member of the EONS Board since June 2023 and a member of the EONS Research Working Group since 2020.