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Cancer not only affects you physically — it also has an undeniable impact on your emotional well-being, as well as that of the people who care about you. To support you and your family during your cancer journey, we provide many support services. You can count on us every step of the way to provide these services with compassion, sensitivity and respect. 

Cancer Center Support Services 

Support Services From The Community 

 

 

American Cancer Society Resource Center

The American Cancer Society (ACS) offers programs to support you and your family during your cancer journey. 

The ACS Resource Center is located on the sixth floor of the Ambulatory Care Center, where a specially trained ACS patient navigator provides information on cancer, community and hospital support programs, and ACS resources for a variety of issues that may arise during your diagnosis and treatment. 

The ACS also offers programs such as 

  • Reach to Recovery - a volunteer visitation program for women with breast cancer
  • Look Good, Feel Better - teaches beauty techniques to cancer patients 
  • I Can Cope - a free online educational program for people facing cancer and their families and friends

The ACS also arranges for accommodations at no charge for qualified patients undergoing cancer treatment and their caregivers. If you are 18 or older and live more than 40 miles away from UMass Memorial Medical Center, you and your caregiver may qualify for nearby lodging at no cost while you undergo treatment at our Cancer Center.

Financial Counselors

For your convenience and peace of mind, UMass Memorial has financial counselors available to help you understand your health insurance benefits. In fact, a dedicated financial counselor is available just for patients who are dealing with cancer. 

Patient Financial Services is open Monday through Friday, 8 am to 4:30 pm. There’s also a financial counselor located on the first floor of the Ambulatory Care Center. This office is open Monday, Wednesday and Friday, 8 am to 4:30 pm, and Tuesday and Thursday, 8 am to noon.

Clinical Social Work 

Clinical social workers are trained to provide support to you and your family in dealing with the medical, emotional and social issues that a cancer diagnosis can raise for you and your loved ones. These interventions can include: 

  • Crisis intervention (emergency psychological care) to help restore balance and your ability to function physically, emotionally and socially 
  • Assistance with problem-solving and decision-making
  • Advocacy 
  • Help and support in coping with potentially life-changing events associated with a cancer diagnosis 

Clinical Health Psychology 

Our clinical health psychologist offers support for the emotional and physical side effects of cancer during and after treatment, which can include fatigue, worry, sadness, and depression. We can help you with the impact of cancer on your family, decision-making about treatment, survivorship and fear of reoccurrence. We also teach relaxation and coping strategies that have been shown to be beneficial during times of stress.

Interpreter Services

Qualified medical interpreters who speak about 20 languages and American Sign Language assist patients and families who do not speak English, have limited English proficiency, or are deaf or hard of hearing. These interpreters are available free of charge, 24 hours a day.

Nutrition and Rehabilitation Services

As you progress through treatment, you may require adjustments to your diet. If this is the case, you’ll be referred to our oncology dietitian for nutritional counseling. This one-on-one counseling is available to ensure that you consume a proper diet while undergoing treatment, or to help manage excessive weight gain or loss as a result of your treatment. If you’d like to meet with our dietitian, please tell your doctor or nurse.

If cancer treatment has affected your physical strength or ability to function normally, you may benefit from physical or occupational therapy. If this is the case, you’ll be referred to the UMass Memorial Outpatient Rehabilitation Services Department. Physical therapists and occupational therapists can design an individualized program to help you regain your strength and improve your everyday functional capabilities. Outpatient rehabilitation services are located on our Hahnemann Campus.

Oncology Specialty Pharmacy

We have a team of pharmacists who specialize in cancer-fighting medications and the development of chemotherapy treatment guidelines. They are available to consult with your care team and help determine precise chemotherapy dosing, and they coordinate safe and timely administration of chemotherapy and other medicines. 

Our Cancer Center also has a team of dedicated staff members who can help obtain prior authorization for your cancer medications. Prior authorization from your insurance company is required three to five days before the start of your treatment. In addition to providing intravenous chemotherapy medications, our pharmacy can fill many of your outpatient prescriptions, which can be dispensed to you while you receive your treatment — saving you an additional trip.

For your convenience, our oncology pharmacy is located on the sixth floor of the Ambulatory Care Center, adjacent to the outpatient infusion area and the outpatient blood and marrow transplantation area.

Patient and Family Support Groups 

Undergoing cancer treatment can be an isolating and difficult experience for both you and your family. That’s why we encourage you and your loved ones to reach out for support. 

Our cancer support group offer a safe, compassionate environment for open discussion, exchange of information and sharing of experiences. A trained medical staff member facilitates each group and is available for assistance after each meeting. The group are open to anyone with a past or present cancer diagnosis. Family, friends and significant others are invited to attend.

For more information about attending this meeting, please contact Diane Bowes-Hudson by emailing Dianne.Bowes-Hudson@umassmemorial.org or calling 774-441-8847

Support Services From The Community 

National Resources

American Cancer Society    www.cancer.org
Cancer.Net          www.cancer.net
CURE www.CUREtoday.com
Leukemia and Lymphoma Society www.lls.org
National Cancer Institute www.cancer.gov
National Comprehensive Cancer Network   www.nccn.org
National Institutes of Health www.nih.gov

 

Caregiver/Support Resources

American Brain Tumor Association  www.abta.org
American Cancer Association    www.cancer.org
Cancer and Careers www.cancerandcareers.org
Cancer Care  www.cancercare.org
Cancer Hope Network www.cancerhopenetwork.org
Cancer Support Community www.cancersupportcommunity.org
Caregiver Action Network www.caregiveraction.org
Musella Foundation www.virtualtrials.com
Oncolink www.oncolink.org
Rosalynn Carter Institute for Caregiving www.rosalynncarter.org
Today’s Caregiver    www.caregiver.com

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  

Financial Resources

American Cancer Society www.cancer.org
Cancer Care   www.cancercare.org
Musella Foundation      www.virtualtrials.com
National Comprehensive Cancer Network    www.nccn.org
Oncolink    www.oncolink.org
Patient Advocate Foundation  www.patientadvocate.org

                    

Medication Resources

Needy Meds   www.needymeds.com
Patient Advocate Foundation Copay Relief   www.copays.org
Rx Assist     www.rxassist.org
The Medicine Program  www.themedicineprogram.com

                                                                           

Palliative Care and Hospice Resources

Get Palliative Care    www.getpalliativecare.org
Hospice Foundation of America www.hospicefoundation.org
National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization       www.caringinfo.org

   

Physical Therapy Resources

Connections Physical Therapy www.connectionspt.com
Select Physical Therapy    www.selectphysicaltherapy.com
Greendale Physical  www.greendalept.com

                         

Transportation Resources

American Cancer Society www.cancer.org
Logisticare         www.logisticare.com
Montachusett Regional Transit Authority    www.mrta.us
Worcester Regional Transit Authority   www.therta.com