When did Valley Medical Center first start coordinating with Cancer Lifeline and our programs? How have things grown over time?
We have been working with Cancer Lifeline since 2006. Over the years, our working relationship has grown into a wonderful collaborative partnership. We rely heavily on a shared commitment to provide access to cancer support resources close to home.
Can you share any observations about the benefits of the classes and support groups as you see them for your patients?
Collaboration at any level of a partnership is most successful when it leverages each partner’s strengths. Patients gain access to a wide range of support services and information – nutrition, exercise, support, and information – drawing on Cancer Lifeline’s expertise. The patients love all the options they have and the connections they are able to make with each other.
What role do you play in the feedback loop for assuring quality control and focus of the programs at Valley?
The stories we hear from people impacted by cancer help us understand the gaps in care and lead discussions to offer assistance that extends beyond treatments for cancer and managing symptoms. We meet regularly with Cancer Lifeline and share feedback from our patients to make sure patient’s needs are being met.
Is there anything that you could remark on about our impact since we have moved all our programs online due to the Pandemic?
Virtual participation has actually increased the number of patients we are able to serve and has made it possible for them to feel less isolated while also keeping them safe. Patients can join groups or take classes that they would have never attended in person due to time or location.
How do Valley Medical Center patients learn about Cancer Lifeline?
We provide care beyond cancer treatment. Patients are cared for by a team of medical specialists, including social workers, navigators, and Infusion nurses. They work together with the patient and families to introduce a support group/class tailored to the unique challenges of people who have (or have had) cancer. Many referrals come from our social workers and care team. We also offer Cancer Lifeline resources on our website.