Anyone touched by cancer knows first hand how challenging the journey can be. Looking back at our cancer journeys, I realize the first one was easy with no complications…. albeit, Alan had to endure one major surgery but that was it. The second cancer diagnosis however brought about a complex maze of confusion and frustration loaded with perilous twists & turns.
What Is An Oncology Nurse Navigator?
I’ve since learned about “Oncology Nurse Navigators”, who are professional nurses (AKA angels) that are extremely knowledgeable about cancer and the resources that exist to help patients & their loved ones. Nurse Navigators can help educate patients about treatment options, different resources to remove roadblocks to treatment (travel assistance, financial assistance, etc.), support options and even just hold a hand throughout treatment. The ultimate goal of a Nurse Navigator is to make sure that all the amazing services offered through health care providers and the community are accessible to all patients.
Sounds amazing, right? I know I wish we had someone there to hold our hand and help us more easily navigate our journey. But the challenge is that not all hospitals and cancer centers have Oncology Nurse Navigators.
This morning, my good friend Jim found an unbelievable resource (yet again… so thank you Jim) for ANYONE touched by cancer…. whether you are the patient, the caregiver, a supportive friend or family member.
Check this out…. The National Coalition of Oncology Nurse Navigators (NCONN)can help you find a Nurse Navigator in your area…. Click HERE to type in your state of residence or where you are receiving care, and they will direct you to an Oncology Nurse Navigator in your area. BTW, this is a FREE service provided by certain hospitals and cancer centers… so the patient will never pay for this incredible assistance.
For more information about support services, please visit our Cancer Support Services page.