Earlier detection rates and improving treatments mean more and more people are surviving cancer. While that is great news, cancer can still have a lasting impact on many patients and their families – sometimes long after treatment ends. The fear of cancer returning and the ongoing side effects of treatment are among the many challenges faced by some cancer survivors. It’s important to remember that help is available for those experiencing emotional, physical, practical and social difficulties.
The Australian Cancer Survivorship Centre, supported by The Pratt Foundation, the Department of Health and Human Services and the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, has a range of resources available to help support cancer survivors.
More resources can be found at Australian Cancer Survivorship Centre.SPECIALIST NURSE SUPPORT FOR BREAST AND PROSTATE CANCER PATIENTSSignificant Advances have been made with the early detection and treatment of cancer. This has resulted in people living longer after completion of treatment.
After cancer treatment finishes many patients still have concerns or side-effects from the cancer and/or its treatment. Cancer survivors can sometimes feel lost and confused once active treatment has stopped.
To help patients feel more empowered to manage their ongoing health care, Western Health has developed a model of care whereby nurses lead Breast and Prostate cancer survivorship services. These services help identify and address immediate and long term health and well-being concerns. These nurse consultants work one on one with individuals formulating an individual care plan which:
reviews ongoing health education and support
addresses side effects of treatment
makes referrals to community services where appropriate, and
communicates transition of care back to the patient’s GP.
Click on the documents below to see
The Survivorship Care Plan for patients with Prostate Cancer
The Survivorship Care Plan for patients with Breast Cancer (currently under review).
See here for more information about palliative care services at Western Health