Patient Resource Center
Cancer patients and their caregivers have access to Patient Resource Centers at McLaren Cancer Institute treatment facilities through a partnership with the American Cancer Society. These centers are designed specifically to assist the cancer patient with their journey and need for information and resources. Literature, videotapes and DVDs, and a lending library provide useful information and tools. Specially trained volunteer resource navigators assist with finding information and resources about the diagnosis and treatment of particular cancers, as well as services that may be available to patients and their families.
Cancer survivors have special needs and interests. Programs designed to offer cancer patients and family members opportunities to share common experiences with others as well as provide education and support in a comfortable environment are offered throughout the year:
- Breast Cancer Support Group
- Healing Arts Program
- General Cancer Patient Support Groups
- Kids Kicking Cancer
- Look Good ... Feel Better
- Smoking Cessation Programs
- US Too Prostate Cancer Support Group
- Caring for Others Caregiver Support Group
- Leukemia/Lymphoma Support Group
- Multiple Myeloma Support Group
Patient Connect Program
Cancer patients, especially at the time of their treatment, are in dire need of understandable information pertaining to their diagnosis, onset, treatment plan, oncology providers, and much more. Over the course of the last five years, oncology physicians and nurses of the McLaren Cancer Institute have developed an educational program that is tailored to the individual patient's disease profile, treatment, and circumstance, and made available to the patient through a menu-driven DVD and, more recently, by direct access through the McLaren Cancer Institute website. Titled Patient Connect©, this program is predicated on patients' need to know as much as possible about their condition and its management.
The content of the DVD is tailored specifically to each patient and includes introductions and footage from their local oncology team. The patient receives this tailored DVD that begins with their name and proceeds to explain their disease and the treatment plan proposed specifically for them. This enables each patient to review and re-review the critical information important to them and enables them to formulate substantive questions regarding their disease, its treatment and impact on their lives. The personal touch provided is an instant satisfier for patients receiving this educational program.
Process improvements internally and a partnership with the American Cancer Society for production and distribution were implemented to improve the referral processes and update the clinical information included in the patient videos Additionally, all centers and new physicians within the McLaren Cancer Institute network were filmed and included in the video libraries for the Patient Connect Program resulting in increased growth for distribution of the program to our patients (see Figure 1). Patient DVDs are available for the leading four cancer diagnoses of breast, colorectal, lung and prostate and include additional resource information on clinical trials, genetic counseling and survivorship care.