Written by on 7/3/2014 6:00:00 AM
A cancer diagnosis can be extremely emotional, and making sense of health information can also be overwhelming. That is why Community has a dedicated cancer care team and oncology nurse navigators to help cancer patients on their journey.
We sat down with breast health navigator, Sharon Bronnenberg, RN, BSN, OCN, CBCN, to talk about the role an oncology navigator plays in a cancer treatment.
What does a oncology nurse navigator do?
I act as a guide, resource, advocate, educator and liaison for newly diagnosed cancer patients and their family. As an oncology navigator with a focus on breast health, my goal is to get answers to all of their questions so that we allay their fears.
I am a consistent caregiver throughout the cancer journey, coordinating appointments and schedules, and providing resources and information. But the most important thing I do is provide support and hope.
What should a cancer patient expect the first time they meet you?
When I meet with a newly diagnosed breast cancer patient I make sure they know their plan of care, as well as the other doctors that they will be seeing.
I also let them know that they will be very busy when they begin treatment, but that as a breast navigator I will try hard to go to all of their appointments with them. From the very first appointment, I educate and reassure the patient by taking notes and answering questions.
Continuity of care is vital for us in order to make the patient feel comfortable and earn their trust. We all have the same goal: To do everything possible to have the best possible outcome for the patient. continue reading ...
Written by on 2/3/2014 9:30:00 AM
Behind every Olympian there is a team of trainers helping him or her prepare for competition. Cancer patients also have a team behind them. Cancer caregivers are just like Olympic trainers and coaches – they’re willing to go the distance for the person battling cancer and act as a beacon of hope. Having a support team is critical to a cancer patient’s recovery.
Author and cancer survivor, Lori Hope, talks about how important and helpful it is to have a caregiver in her book, Help Me Live: 20 Things People With Cancer Want You To Know. “We want nothing more than to offer comfort and support, and foster hope. But we don’t always know how—and may feel uncomfortable asking,” said Hope.
Following her own treatment for cancer, Hope asked cancer survivors about issues surrounding their cancer journey that they wanted their families, friends and caregivers to understand. Here are five of the things that she discovered and encourages cancer caregivers to be mindful of. continue reading ...