Meet Krista Rubin, MS, FNP-BC

by Mara Klecker

Krista Rubin has spent her entire 30-plus year career in oncology nursing. For the last 22 years,
she’s been a nurse practitioner focused on caring for patients with advanced skin cancers and
works at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. She has also recently started answering
questions through the free and confidential “Ask a Skin Cancer Nurse” program for Much like “Ask an Expert,” which is offered through AIM at Melanoma,
“Ask a Skin Cancer Nurse” offers a way for patients to get answers to questions about
nonmelanoma skin cancer diagnosis, treatment and side effects, clinical trials, and survivorship.

“One of my strengths is being able to translate the medical jargon or the media jargon and think about what is going to be helpful to the person I’m speaking with at the moment,” Krista said.

Her goal is to create a safe place for patients and their families to ask questions that they may not feel comfortable or have time to ask their physicians. Krista will then answer the question through a phone call or email. Some answers are less about offering specifics and more about
providing reassurance and pointing patients to additional, up-to-date information.

The work is an extension of what she’s always focused on, even as a young nurse: “I feel very strongly that patients who have cancer shouldn’t be identified by their cancer,” she said. Rather, they should be treated as someone who is dealing with a potentially life-threatening illness but also trying to live their life at the same time.

Early in her career, Krista fell in love with oncology because she fell in love with the patients.
Despite facing a potentially life-threatening situation, cancer patients still find ways to “gracefully
live their life and make meaning out of the day-to-day,” she said.

As her career went on, she fell into working with patients with skin cancers and decided to
continue that focus when she became a nurse practitioner.

Because of the advancements in the treatments available for skin cancer, Krista said more
patients are receiving therapies in the medical oncology arena, and there’s been an influx of
patients looking for the latest information on treatments for nonmelanoma skin cancers. That’s
why a site like AIM at Skin Cancer is so important, she said.

Most of the questions that Krista has received so far have been about treatments, but she’s also
heard from patients who simply want to know what sorts of things they should be asking their
physician about during appointments.

No question is silly, she said. “I just want to provide helpful information in a way that is framed
for their particular situation.”


Recent Posts

Post Categories