Cancer Treatment Is Over, So What's Next?

The end of cancer treatment can be a relief for patients and their families, but it also can be a time of new concerns.

That's why the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center offers the REACH for Survivorship Program. This is a unique service in our region for cancer survivors of all ages, who have faced any type of cancer and who have received cancer treatment from any healthcare provider.

Anyone who has completed cancer treatment -- recently or long ago -- and how has concerns about physical, emotional or practical issues related to cancer and its treatment can benefit from this clinic. So can any cancer survivor who is doing well but wants to remain healthy; you do not have to be experiencing difficulties to benefit from a visit to the clinic.

This service offers a full range of follow-up care designed to meet your invidual needs, whether physical, emotional or practical. You will leave with personalized Cancer Survivorship Care Plan that will be your roadmap for your future health and well being.

What is a Survivorship Care Plan?

This plan includes detailed information about:

  • your cancer diagnosis and treatment
  • the treatment facility and oncology health care providers
  • potential long-term physical and emotional problems
  • potential risks of treatment and screening guidelines
  • recommendations to prevent chronic illness, cancer recurrence or new cancers

This plan will be reviewed with you and copies will be sent to your oncologist, primary care physician and other appropriate health care providers.

What services does the survivorship clinic offer?

  • Thorough review of your medical record and a personalized survivor survey you will complete before your visit.
  • Comprehensive health history and examination
  • Development of an individualized Survivor Care Plan-a roadmap for your future health and well-being
  • Survivor Handbook information on physical, emotional and daily living issues specific to cancer survivors
  • Assistance with social, emotional and financial issues
  • Coordination between oncology and primary care services
  • Referrals to psychology, genetics, physical and occupational therapy, nutrition, social work, vocational and rehabilitation therapy, and other specialties as needed
  • Navigation to national, community and online resources
  • Educational classes and events
  • Access to state-of-the-art research designed to prevent or manage adverse long term effects of cancer and its treatment.
  • Referrals to specialists in psychology, genetics, social work, and medical sub-specialties
  • Educational resources on physical, emotional and daily living issues specific to cancer survivors
  • Navigation to locate community and web-based resources
  • Access to state-of-the-art research designed to prevent or manage adverse long term effects of cancer and its treatment.

What does a first visit involve?

You will complete several questionnaires that will help us understand your current health and provide a guide for your care. We will then develop a "Survivorship Care Plan" for you including, a medical evaluation, educational and support resources, and health recommendations specific to your needs and goals.

Your first survivorship clinic will take about an hour to allow plenty of time for discussion. Our team will do their best to coordinate any imaging or lab evaluations for the same day. Please allow time to complete all scheduled testing. In addition to the evaluations provided by our team, evaluations in other specialty clinics can be arranged as needed following your visit.

Following your appointment, our team will prepare a letter summarizing your clinic visit, including any recommendations. This summary will be mailed to you and your primary care doctor.

Will my insurance cover these services?

While you should always consult your insurance plan if you have questions about coverage, insurance carriers typically cover the clinic visit as well as most associated medically required tests or specialty visits

Insurance coverage varies for such services as nutrition counseling, psychological counseling, and physical or occupational therapy. Our office staff will assess the teams recommendations and your insurance coverage prior to your visit; we will discuss any potential out-of-pocket costs with you ahead of time.

Do I need a referral from my physician?

You may be referred by your oncologist or primary care physician, or you may initiate the visit on your own.

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