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When a parent, sibling, relative or friend has been diagnosed with cancer, and they don’t live with you, it is difficult to know how and when to get involved. You may not consider yourself to be a “caregiver” but you likely care a great deal and want to help.

The term “Long-Distance Caregiver” is often used for anyone who provides some form of physical, emotional, spiritual, financial or logistical support to a person with a serious illness, though they live at a distance from the person needing care. If you find yourself in this position, this section is written to help you navigate the issues that arise from the point of diagnosis, through periods of treatment, to survivorship or the possibility of bereavement.

support from a distance cover

Support from a Distance Comprehensive Caregiving Guide

This booklet is written for long distance caregivers to help navigate the issues that arise from the point of diagnosis, through periods of treatment, to survivorship or the possibility of bereavement.


  • Who is a Long-distance Caregiver
  • Relationships
  • Practical Considerations
  • Long-Distance Support at Diagnosis
  • Long-Distance Support During & After Treatment
  • Long-Distance Support FOR Advanced Disease
  • Resources

View/Download eBook (PDF)

Radio Show

In the United States, families are often spread all over—sometimes on opposite coasts or in opposite climates. In fact, it is estimated that 7 million people in the U.S. are long-distance caregivers. On this Frankly Speaking About Cancer Radio Show, guest host Linda House and Sara Goldberger, Senior Director of Programs at the Cancer Support Community, will talk about common challenges of being a long-distance caregiver, unique ways that a long-distance caregiver can be helpful and how to handle the emotional impacts of caregiving on families.

Listen to the Radio Show


Blog Support from a Distance - 5 Tips for Long-Distance Caregivers

Often, long-distance caregivers may feel guilty for not being there in person, struggle with coordinating support for their loved one or worry about emergency situations. It’s important for these far-away loved ones to remember that they are not alone—In fact, it is estimated that 7 million people in the U.S. are long-distance caregivers. Many of these people are family members of someone with cancer—daughters and sons, brothers and sisters, nieces and nephews. Below are a few tips for supporting your loved one and yourself even when you can’t be there physically.

10 Tips for Caregivers

A cancer diagnosis can impact your whole world. But what happens when you are also a big part of someone else’s world? Cancer impacts not just the person diagnosed, but their whole network of friends, family members and loved ones can feel the effects as well. This is especially true for the person acting as caregiver.

Tips for Long-distance Caregivers

When someone you love has cancer, and you live far away from them, it can be overwhelming and confusing. Despite being a long-distance caregiver, you still play a vital role in providing comfort, hope and support. There are several things you can do from a distance to ensure that your loved one has the support they need throughout their cancer journey.