Getting a cancer diagnosis can immediately pause everything in your life — work, family commitments, long-term plans. And while your focus is laser-sharp on treating your disease and recovering as quickly as possible, it can be easy to forget a very important part of the equation:
The HonorHealth Virginia G. Piper Cancer Care Network offers a spectrum of support for cancer patients like you. Cancer support services will allow you to navigate the often confusing world of being a cancer patient. When you get a diagnosis, it's common to be inundated with advice and stories from well-meaning friends and family. But sometimes, you need an expert who's on your side.
That's where the support services of the HonorHealth Virginia G. Piper Cancer Care Network come in. A team of navigators, social workers, exercise physiologists, nutritionists and librarians, as well as support groups and classes for patients and caregivers, can help you.
Support after a cancer diagnosis
Because there are so many places to turn, you need someone to guide you when you're faced with countless decisions about treatment and support. Navigators will work with you to explain your disease — even the questions you might be too embarrassed to ask your doctor. You'll also learn how to talk to your doctor so you feel empowered, and what to expect throughout your treatment. Staff will provide you the resources to guide you through the healing process.
There's no such thing as a bad question or improper request. The team is there to help you through your experience. So whether it's knowing how to make a smoothie that you can comfortably digest to knowing how to tell your child about your disease, there's someone who can help.
Virginia G. Piper Cancer Care Network
Dr. Sommer Gunia shares her thoughts on the patient care provided at the HonorHealth Virginia G. Piper Cancer Care Network.
Because your cancer is unique, there's no set path for when you might need or want support. The common component for each patient is that you're filled with questions, and maybe a bit of fear, after receiving a cancer diagnosis.
The most important thing you can do at this stage is get prepared for treatment. That means educating yourself by asking questions and getting introduced to the services available to you.
In addition to talking about your health, the team also will want to know about your family situation, whether you have concerns about insurance coverage, finances or transportation.
Support during your treatment
It's common for your focus during cancer treatment to be on your health, but it's also critical to think about your well-being. That includes not only your emotional health, but also your ability to maintain a daily routine and find some normalcy during treatment.
Your navigator can connect you with a variety of services to help you during treatment. Because life can feel like it's moving especially fast during treatment, it's wise to have a sounding board resource who will help you to:
- Talk about ways to ask your doctors questions
- Meet with a nutritionist to come up with a plan for proper nutrition when you're not feeling your best
- Help your body stay healthy and strong with exercise rehabilitation programs
- Quench your thirst for knowledge, a library offers books and other resources for understanding your disease
Support for cancer survivorship
Once you've completed treatment, your cancer journey can feel like it comes to an abrupt halt. But the reality is that survivorship is an adjustment, and there are resources available to help you through it, including cancer survivor support groups.
When you enter survivorship, your navigator will go over the survivorship care plan provided by your physician. The plan includes:
- Questions you should ask your doctor
- What you can expect – scheduling cancer screenings in the future, getting support, managing the everyday stresses of life, and dealing with concerns about recurrence
- How to talk to your children, family members or friends about survivorship, now that you've completed treatment. They'll want to ask questions, and you'll want to feel comfortable answering them.
Your navigator is happy to talk to you at any point during your treatment. Through a simple consultation, your nurse navigator will learn about you and your diagnosis — and you'll get the opportunity to find out about the full range of services available to you.
Explore a variety of cancer support services at HonorHealth: