Resources You’ve Always Wanted, But Didn’t Know It

Recently, an email came into my inbox from a group of librarians putting together an educational website.  It’s unfortunate that I somewhat disregarded it for almost a week (I get many “spam” emails related to business), but I finally got to it, and what a gem! Despite the fact that most resources are usually put together by someone hoping to promote their own brand, I found these resources quite informative. Very refreshing!

I have been helping women with breast cancer for 7 years this coming October, and, each year, I learn more about the needs or our patients. We have an ever growing list of Resources because of it, and just recently created a consolidated site for breast surgery specifically, The Chicago Breast Center. But, I’d never come across these specific resources, so I immediately thought to share them. I hope you find them helpful!

Assistance Speaking to your Doctor About Treatment, from National Comprehensive Cancer Network 

Oftentimes, we see patients at the beginning of their cancer journey, some of whom just learned about their cancer diagnosis that very week. As if trying to understand all that is happening is not enough, many of them are contemplating surgery before even having a full understanding of what is going on. In a time of high anxiety and when trying to learn about something you’ve never had exposure to, it can be helpful to know what questions to ask. I found this resource quite helpful in this regard, and would highly recommend patients review it if they are looking to better understand their diagnosis and what questions to ask about their treatment options.  Beyond our patient population, it also addresses many different kinds of cancer, so can be an excellent resource to share with others!

Know your Rights, from American Cancer Society

The Women’s Health and Cancer Rights Act was signed into law in 1998. Learn more about your rights to coverage for breast surgery and reconstruction in this helpful review.

Financial Resources, from Cancer.Net

Despite improving accessibility to insurance and laws requiring coverage for breast reconstruction surgeries, patients may still struggle with the financial burden of medical costs related to their cancer care.  This website offers a multitude of options for patients seeking financial assistance.  I cannot speak directly to the ability to obtain support, but can clearly see this could be an excellent starting place for someone in need.

If you have questions related to these resources or comments, please feel free to reach out to me!  I can be reached at [email protected]

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