Linda House on Considering How a Patient's Needs May Change
As patients with cancer live longer and the disease becomes a chronic disease for many, it becomes important for providers to understand how the needs of the patient change from being newly diagnosed to active therapy to long-term therapy, explained Linda House, president of the Cancer Support Community.
Transcript (slightly modified) With innovations in care, cancer is being viewed more as a chronic condition, does that change patient advocacy?
As cancer becomes more of a chronic condition we really need to take a look at the specific needs of patients along that whole continuum. So, being really thoughtful to understand that what a patient needs when they're newly diagnosed may not in fact be what they need when they're converting from active therapy to long-term therapy. And it may not be what they need when they're trying to live with long-term side effects, for example.
As a patient advocate organization, it behooves us to teach the patients how to advocate for themselves. So as you're thinking about self navigation, what questions do you ask, what resources do you seek out, how do you cope with each of those steps along the way?
And we all really owe it to patients to do this in an evidence-based way. So we have a cancer experience registry where we now have about 8000 who document what that experience looks like. We'll share that with anybody, so as you think about creating solutions, it's really evidence-based on the needs of the patient.