Communication WG – Biographies

Michaela Popelkova, Czech Republic (Co-Chair)
Michaela Popelkova is a cancer nurse originally from the Czech Republic. She graduated in 2017 with her bachelor’s degree on the 3rd Faculty of Medicine, Charles University in Prague. Since that time she has worked on the Inpatient Oncology Unit and Daily Chemo Unit in Motol University Hospital, where she became Nurse Manager of both Units soon. Since 2018 she is a proud member of the EONS Young Cancer Nurses Network and the Czech YCN Network Representative. In January 2021 she became EONS YCN Co-Chair. She is passionate about cancer care as well as about leadership and the support of her nurse colleagues across Europe in educational possibilities and preventing burnout syndrome, bullying in the workplace, and other Young Cancer Nurses’ concerns. She was awarded the EONS RECaN Award in 2020. In 2021, Michaela relocated to the USA, where she would like to continue to work as a cancer nurse after taking the necessary exams.

Nikolina Dodlek, Croatia, (Co-Chair)  
Nikolina has been an MSN cancer nurse since 2010, working as a lead nurse and shift manager of the sub-department for oncology and radiotherapy in University Hospital Center Osijek, in the Inpatient Unit with adult patients undergoing chemo, immuno and radiation therapy, as well as acute oncology and end of life care. Since 2015, she has also been working also at the J.J.Strossmayer University of  Osijek, Croatia, as a teaching assistant and mentoring nursing students 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. Nikolina is a Secretary, Co-founder and Executive Board Member of Croatian Oncology Nursing Society. She is also an EONS (from October 2019) and ESMO member. During 2020, in collaboration with 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 represents EONS in ECO on Quality of Cancer Care. She is passionate about oncology nursing, evidence-based clinical practice, student mentoring, nursing and patient education and research, alongside direct patient care.

Carlos Fernandes Cargaleiro, UK
Carlos Fernandes Cargaleiro graduated as a nurse in 1993. Carlos has an MSc in Medical-Surgical Nursing, a postgraduate specialisation in Medical-Surgical Nursing and a postgraduate qualification in Intensive Care Nursing. He has been working in the UK since 2011. For six years, he worked in an oncologic-only critical care unit in a dedicated cancer centre in London, where he was one of the staff team leaders. Since 2017, Carlos has been working as a Nurse Practitioner, working as a member of the extended surgical team for low gastrointestinal surgery in a London university hospital, seeing patients in the ward and providing a clinical plan for treatment. Carlos also participates in the 2WW list telephone assessment clinic, when on a weekly basis he assesses patients referred by local general practices and he recommends further investigations to exclude bowel cancer. Carlos attended the ESO-EONS Masterclass in Oncology Nursing in 2014.

Joanna Tsatsou, Greece
Joanna has been working as a clinical cancer nurse since 2010 on an oncology- hematology ward in a general hospital. She is also a clinical educator for the new nurses in her hospital and her ward. She holds an MSc in Palliative and Supportive Care and over the years obtained specialisations in internal medicine, flight nursing, breast cancer nursing, healthcare management, special education and teaching. She attended the 7th ESO-EONS Masterclass, the 4th EONS Research Proposal Workshop and the EONS Social Media Workshop. Moreover, she is a board member (secretariat) of the Hellenic Oncology Nurses Society-Hellenic Nurses Association, and also the manager of the social media accounts and the Young Cancer Nurses Team of the society. Her research interests are sexuality and cancer, survivorship, AYAs and patient education. You can follow Joanna on Twitter: @JoannaTsatsou, and connect at LinkedIn: Joanna Tsatsou.

Nellie Kumuralingam, UK
Nellie is an experienced cancer nurse with a specialist interest in melanoma. Currently Nellie works as a Nurse Consultant for melanoma at the Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust in Kent, UK. A qualified advanced nurse practitioner, Nellie is passionate about supporting nurses to gain the skills, expertise and experience needed to provide expanded care for patients. Over a 20+ year career, she has worked in a variety of nursing roles from staff nurse to ward sister to clinical nurse specialist to advanced nurse practitioner. Nellie completed a Bachelor of Science in nursing studies at Middlesex University. She has a Master of Science in advanced nursing practice from London South Bank University. She also has a diploma in cancer nursing from The Royal Marsden School of Cancer Nursing. She has completed research into patient-initiated follow up for stage 1 melanoma and the experiences of patients receiving immunotherapy for metastatic melanoma. Her achievements include co-editing and co-writing chapters for The Fundamentals of Cancer Care for UKONS in 2021.

Nellie is a member of BASCSN, NCRI ECR forum and TYAC, committee member for the RCN CYP specialist care forum and UKASCC enhanced supportive care group. She is a board member with UKONS and is a committee member for The Global Power of Oncology Nursing which celebrates and highlights the work of cancer nurses in low/middle income countries.

Nellie is an advocate for nursing leadership, patient/ public involvement and advanced practice.

Remziye Semerci, Turkey
Remziye is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pediatric Nursing at Koç University, Istanbul, Turkey. She is interested in childhood cancer and symptom management. Her research and teaching focus on management of chemotherapy-induced symptoms and reducing these symptoms with non-pharmacological methods. She is a member of the Turkey Oncology Nursing Society; additionally, she also has a role in some commissions; Pediatric Oncology Group (group secretary) and Research Group (group secretary). She is a Turkish representative of the Young Cancer Nurses Network and a member of the SIOP Nursing Working Group.

Ezgi Bilmic, Turkey
Ezgi is a specialist cancer nurse at an outpatient chemotherapy unit in a state hospital in Turkey. She has also worked as a research assistant at Koç University and completed her master’s degree in internal medicine nursing there in 2022. Her master’s dissertation was on “The effectiveness of an Online Pain Management Education on the Patients Related Barriers to Cancer Pain Management”. Her research focus area is pain management in cancer patients. She has participated (as a management committee member and moderator) in international congresses in Istanbul. She has a patent regarding a corset used in the treatment of cancer from the Turkish Patent and Trademark Office in 2023. She was awarded the EONS Early Career Development Grant in 2021. Besides that, she received the Academic Excellence Award in Recognition of Outstanding Academic Achievements from Koç University. She is a member of the Turkish Oncology Nurses Society. She has also received the certificate of oncology nursing from the Republic of Türkiye Ministry of Health. 

Helena McCallig, Ireland
BN (Hons) Adult Nursing University of Southampton, Graduate Diploma Cancer Nursing University College Dublin, MSc in Nursing (Clinical Practice) University College Dublin.

Helena is a clinical nurse specialist currently working within the Department of Cancer Services in University Hospital Limerick, Ireland. Her MSc explored how oncology nurses experience psychological distress. Throughout her career in oncology, she has worked in inpatient units, outpatients and within cancer clinical trials. She is a member of the national executive committee of the Irish Association of Nurses in Oncology as a young cancer nurse representative and a representative of the Young Cancer Nurses Network within EONS. She received the Irish Association for Nurses in Oncology Presidents Prize in 2021 after presenting her research nationally on oncology nurses and their experiences of psychological distress. After receiving the award she travelled to Memorial Sloan Kettering in New York for a placement.

Gabriela Mavrodin, Romania

Gabriela graduated as a nurse in 1984 and she studied at the University of Nursing in 2011. She has a postgraduate specialisation in Paediatric Nursing (1992) and Paediatric Oncology Nursing in (2016). She has been working in the Maria Sklodowska Curie Paediatric Emergency Hospital Bucharest for 39 years. As a paediatric nurse she has worked primarily in a neonatology unit and respiratory unit for 27 years. She has currently been working as chief nurse in a paediatric oncology unit in the same hospital for 12 years. Gabriela is an individual member of EONS since 2016. She attended the 10th ESO-EONS Masterclass in Oncology Nursing in 2017 in Germany, the ESO-EONS Masterclass in Oncology Nursing in 2018 in Hungary and the ESO-EONS Clinical Fellowship for Cancer Nurses, in Milan, Italy, in 2019. She believes that improving cancer nurse education improves cancer care.

Gianluca Conte, Italy

Gianluca graduated as a nurse in 1996. He worked as a registered oncology nurse since 1997 in inpatient and outpatient units. In 2006, he held a master’s degree in oncology and palliative nursing care, and he started working as a research nurse. For 5 years he took care of lung cancer patients enrolled in clinical trials. Then he moved to the palliative care area and focused his PhD program on improving quality of life of patients with palliative care needs. In 2014, he started his academic career at the University of Genoa (Italy) and ever since, in addition to all his teaching commitments he has conducted many research studies in the field of healthcare quality and safety, and palliative and cancer nursing care with a history of over 90 publications in peer reviewed journals. In 2017, he was granted with the Fulbright Research Scholarship from the U.S.-Italy Fulbright Commission and moved to Philadelphia where he worked with Professor Linda Aiken and her staff at the Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Research (CHOPR) at the School of Nursing at the University of Pennsylvania. At the moment, Gianluca is Assistant Professor at the Department of Health Sciences at the University of Genoa and Senior Fellow at the CHOPR University of Pennsylvania (USA).

Helen Oswald, UK
Helen Oswald is EONS Communications Manager. She is responsible for overseeing the EONS website, newsletter and social media.