Cancer nurse navigator guides you to wellness
Nurse navigator guides you along the path to wellness
“After a cancer diagnosis, a patient’s first reaction is usually fear,” explains Terrie Cannon, BSN, RN, OCN, Nazareth Hospital oncology nurse navigator. “They’re afraid they’ll never get better. That’s not true. There’s so much we can do today.”
Every cancer patient being treated at Nazareth Hospital is assigned to Terrie, a registered nurse with training in cancer care. She’s an expert who acts as liaison between the hospital’s oncology team, the patient and the patient’s family. Terrie facilitates appointments, helps to manage insurance paperwork or financial need applications, and guides patients to support groups.
The navigation process begins with an explanation of the latest treatments options, then a review of the diagnosis and treatment plan, including side effects and time frames. “At first, many patients don’t hear much after ‘You have cancer.’ I can help by carefully explaining what the doctor discussed and keep the focus on moving forward,” Terrie says.
David Baldwin, who began treatment for colon cancer at Nazareth Hospital in 2011, worked closely with Terrie. “Terrie had a calming affect on me,” David recalls. “She stuck by me every step of the way.”
“I think of myself as a coach,” Terrie says. “If I can help remove fear of the unknown, the focus can shift to survival—and there’s a better chance of winning.”
Chart a Course
Learn more about how our nurse navigators guide our patients through care at mercyhealth.org/services/cancer-care.