ONS Guidelines™

ONS Guidelines Overview

Clinical practice guidelines provide evidence-based symptom management recommendations for patient care. Guidelines incorporate published research with expert consensus on the certainty of the evidence, the balance of benefits and harms and patient preferences and values. Created with rigorous methodology, the guideline recommendations can be utilized by nurses and other oncology health care professionals, patients, and policy makers with a goal of improving care for patients with cancer.

ONS Guidelines™ have been reviewed and accepted by ECRI Guidelines Trust®, a publicly available web-based repository of objective, evidence-based clinical practice guideline content.  ECRI’s TRUST (Transparency and Rigor Using Standards of Trustworthiness) Scorecard assesses clinical practice guidelines against the Institute of Medicine standards of trustworthy guidelines. Please visit ECRI Guidelines Trust to view available scorecards for ONS Guidelines.

Guideline Methodology

Guideline International Network (GIN)-McMaster Guideline Development Checklist

  • This checklist contains a comprehensive list of topics and items that outline steps to consider when developing guidelines.

National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine: Clinical Practice Guidelines We Can Trust

  • This report issued by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) in 2011 includes eight standards and recommendations that should be incorporated into all clinical practice guidelines to ensure they are unbiased, scientifically valid, trustworthy and that they characterize the quality of evidence and strength of clinical recommendations.

Guidelines in Development

ONS is interested in your thoughts and expertise on our current guidelines as well as topics that we could address in future guidelines. Share your ideas by emailing help@ons.org.

Guideline Resources

Oncology Nursing Podcast Episode 76: ONS Guidelines Will Answer Key Symptom Management Questions

This podcast discusses the ONS Guidelines, the process by which they were developed, and how they will influence practice for nurses and clinicians throughout the oncology community



  • GRADEpro is a tool to assist guideline developers in enabling and aiding collaboration and management of guideline development teams.

GRADE website

  • The Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE) working group is a collaboration of people with an interest in developing a common, sensible and transparent approach to grading the quality or certainty of evidence and strength of recommendations.

GIN website

  • Guidelines International Network is an organization to lead, strengthen and support collaboration in guideline development, adaptation, and implementation globally. It includes several resources and opportunities for health care professionals interested in networking and collaborating in guideline development.


  • AMSTAR is an instrument to critically appraise systematic reviews of randomised and non-randomised studies of health care interventions and is used by guideline developers when assessing a body of evidence.

Terms and Conditions for ONS Guidelines™

By accessing or using ONS Guidelines, you agree to the Terms and Conditions for ONS Guidelines™. ONS Guidelines are for your personal use only. This means that, among other things, you cannot share ONS Guidelines on your employer’s intranet or integrate ONS Guidelines into your employer’s EHR system. If you would like information about how you or your organization can use ONS Guidelines, please contact licensing@ons.org for licensing and other opportunities.

ONS Symptom Interventions and Guidelines

Get evidence-based guidlines and interventions for quality patient care and teaching.

View All Symptom Interventions and Guidelines