Supportive Care Programs for Women with Breast
The Joan Karnell Cancer Center offers a wide
variety of supportive
care programs. Several
of these specific programs are described below:
Person-to-Person is a supportive care
program that was developed to support and encourage
newly diagnosed cancer patients and those undergoing
treatment for cancer. Trained volunteers, who
are cancer survivors, provide visits or
phone calls to newly diagnosed patients. The
primary goal is to diminish the patient's anxiety
by providing a supportive environment in which
they can express fears and concerns that they
might not want to share with family members.
The volunteer's job is to help the patient to function as a healthy
person within the limits of their illness by offering examples of
coping skills that helped them, the volunteer, come to terms with
their disease. The group meets on the last Thursday of the month and
new members, six months or more past their treatment, are welcome
Facing Forward is a breast cancer education support group
that meets on the third Tuesday of each month. The group consists
of women who have experienced mastectomies, lumpectomies,
and/or hormonal therapy.
The overall purpose of the support group is to provide emotional
and social support for the participants in a safe, protective environment,
and to help normalize fears and concerns by meeting with others who
are experiencing similar life changes.
This group is co-facilitated by an oncology social worker and an
oncology nurse, who also run the Person-to-Person group. Guest speakers
address a variety of topics of interest to women with breast cancer.
New members are welcome and encouraged to attend.
Healthy Balance is an education support group focusing on
nutrition, exercise and body image. Weight gain is a common side effect,
which can be very disturbing for many women. The reasons for the weight
gain are not fully understood but many factors have been implicated
such as: nausea, stress eating, decreased physical activity, hormonal
or metabolic changes. This new program is designed for women who have
completed breast cancer treatment.
The goal of Healthy Balance is to provide education regarding healthy
food choices, discuss attitudes about the relationship
we have with foods, provide tools to support
mindful eating, offering emotional support and discussing ways to
increase physical activity. If you are 20 pounds or more over our
comfortable weight or if you experienced a weight gain through your
treatment, this program may be for you.