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My Experience with Interactive Cancer Care

Thursday, October 15, 2015

In 1998 at 24 years old, I was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Since then, I’ve had three awake brain surgeries, radiation, chemotherapy and clinical trials.

Through my healing journey, as I searched to acquire support, I found I was only scratching the surface in my new cancer world. As I explored to find new resources—in time—clarity emerged. I could not just focus on the disease and instead had to include the whole person.

Taking Charge of Scars: Emerging Art of Mastectomy Tattoos

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

After being diagnosed with breast cancer, millions of women are faced with the tough decision of undergoing a mastectomy or lumpectomy, in addition to other forms of treatment like chemotherapy or radiation therapy. Following these surgeries, which leave women with scars or no breasts at all, there is the option of having reconstructive surgery or leaving the scars as they are. Non-profits like P.Ink want to give women another option—tattoos. While tattooing over surgical scars is not a practice unique to P.Ink and can be requested at any tattoo parlor, P.Ink is one of the only nonprofits in the country that provides women with creative and self-expressive ways to transform their scars.

How to Help CSC in 30 Seconds or Less

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

What if a 30 second action could raise thousands of dollars, and then those dollars helped provide millions of people touched by cancer as well as their families with high-quality social and emotional support? It sounds too good to be true, right? It’s not. In fact, you can do that right now and until next Tuesday!

So what are we asking, exactly? Help us finish strong in the last week of Ready. Raise. Rise., a national competition sponsored by Bristol-Myers Squibb to raise awareness of cancer advocacy organizations.

How Do Patients Define Value in Cancer Care?

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

In a time when the price tag on health care continues to rise, and more of the cost burden is being shifted to patients, there is a crucial conversation taking place in the cancer world about how value is defined. It led us at the Cancer Support Community to ask – do patients define value the same way as the health care system? And we sought to get answers by first asking the experts- the patients themselves- a single question: “When considering your cancer experience, how do you define value?” Thousands answered by participating in our Cancer Experience Registry, a panel of cancer patients. The data was so compelling that we launched additional registries for specific cancers, starting with metastatic breast cancer “mbc”. While there are some consistent themes across the various diagnoses, people with different kinds of cancer have issues that are more specific, or even unique to their diseases. At the same time, we researched traditional definitions of value in health care so that we could compare them with the definitions put forward by people with mbc. The disconnect between the two was staggering – but maybe not surprising.

Big Boys Don't Cry Over Skinned Knees

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

June is National Men’s Health Month, and it’s a great time to raise awareness for men’s self-care and support. The leading causes of death for men in America are heart disease and cancer. Lung cancer and skin cancer are the leading causes of cancer related deaths in America. Often because of the way men are raised, it can be easy to miss opportunities to prevent or diagnose these cancers due to societal pressure on men to endure pain and hardship rather than ask for help.

Unleash Your Voice!

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Let’s face it. It can be easy to feel disconnected from the government. Sometimes you may feel like your voice isn’t important. But luckily, for the 13.7 million people in the United States impacted by cancer, that’s not the case. Your voice is VERY important! What many Americans don’t realize is that they have the power to not only make their voice heard, but also to be an advocate for people impacted by cancer.

Pink, Black and White: The Real Color of Breast Cancer

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

In 2014, the Sinai Urban Health Institute and the Avon Foundation for Women conducted a study of the death rates of white and black women due to breast cancer in 50 of the nation’s largest cities over a period of 20 years. The results were striking:

Though white women are more likely to be diagnosed with breast cancer, on average black women are 40% more likely to die from it.

The most lethal city is Memphis, TN where black women are more than twice as likely to succumb to the disease.

Cities with the highest disparity rates are cities where there are geographically separated medical centers that serve either primarily black or white patients (with little racial mixing).

The mortality rates were relatively even until 1995. After that, white women’s rates declined while black women’s rates stayed the same.

Understanding the Impact of Cancer on Caregivers

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Whether you love this holiday or completely despise it, Valentine’s Day is this Saturday. If you’re a person who loves Valentine’s Day, this is a day to celebrate love and companionship. But when your Valentine is living with cancer and you’re acting as the caregiver, this day can take on a deeper and more complex meaning. Caring for a spouse can be extremely challenging. According to the National Quality of Life Survey for Caregivers, a caregiver spends an average of eight hours a day providing care and support to their loved one, and many caregivers feel just as much distress, if not more, than the patient does.

CSC on Capitol Hill

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Cancer Support Community participated in the September 30th briefings on Capitol Hill to discuss the importance of the protected classes for Medicare beneficiaries facing cancer diagnoses.

Shining the Light on MPNs

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Each year, about 14,500 people are diagnosed with myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPNs), a group of rare blood cancers originating in bone marrow. Tomorrow, September 11, 2014 is recognized as MPN Awareness Day. Living with a rare cancer like an MPN comes with a unique set of challenges that make raising awareness, tomorrow and every day, crucial—so that no one faces cancer alone.

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