Take-Aways on Cancer Survivorship & Support

Cancer Survivorship SupportWe recently held a live web chat with Joan Giblin, NP, Director of Survivorship at Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University. During the discussion, Joan answered questions about Winship’s survivorship programs and emphasized the importance of survivors, no matter what stage or walk of life, engaging in some form of survivorship program. Below you’ll find Joan’s main highlights from the chat discussion.

According to the National Cancer Institute, an individual is considered a cancer survivor from the time of diagnosis through the balance of his or her life. Family members, friends and caregivers are also impacted by the survivorship experience and are therefore included in this description.

At the Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University, we take survivorship seriously and have developed programs to help you navigate through your role as a “survivor.” The cancer journey is difficult enough to maneuver through, so our comprehensive and dedicated care team members are there for you each step of the way.

For some survivors, life during and after cancer takes getting used to. What was normal prior to diagnosis may not be the case after cancer treatment. Ongoing care and attention to maintain a healthy quality of life is recommended. It is important to surround yourself with people who are going to encourage you to heal, both physically and mentally.  Exercise, maintaining a proper diet and joining a support group are all activities that will help your body heal from the physical and emotional distress cancer may have caused.

At Winship, we provide support for all stages of survivorship. We update and post a monthly calendar, which lists the support groups, community outreach events and services offered through Winship’s survivorship program. Support groups are available based on age, gender, type of cancer, etc. There are also groups specific to family members and caretakers of cancer survivors.

Recently, Winship partnered with the YMCA of Metro Atlanta to provide survivors with better access to exercise programs in closer range of their homes. Called Winship at the Y, this program is a collaboration unlike any other in the country. Winship staff including nurse practitioners, physician assistants, social workers and dieticians will train YMCA wellness coaches and staff on the specific fitness and exercises needs of cancer survivors.

So whether you just received the news of your cancer diagnosis, or you’re 30 years in remission, Winship offers support programs for every type of “survivor.” For more information on all our programs, please feel free to email me at survivorship@emoryhealthcare.org. If you missed the live chat, but would like to see the full discussion, the chat transcript is available now to view.

Author: Joan Giblin, Director of Survivorship Program at the Winship Cancer Institute

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