Patient & Visitor
We’re Here to Meet Every Patient’s Needs
As you undergo cancer treatment, Grady provides physical, emotional, and spiritual support. Our multidisciplinary team of cancer specialists will tend to your medical needs, but we know that many patients need other assistance to deal with this confusing and frightening disease. Our navigators can provide access to an array of support services.
Cancer can take a toll on patients and their families. To help overcome the challenges that get in the way of needed treatment, Grady offers every patient support from a navigator. Navigators can be social workers, nurse navigators, clinic nurses, or patient navigators supported by the American Cancer Society. They guide patients and their families through the complexities of cancer treatment and can:
- Connect you with the right Grady resource to address your needs
- Provide information about your diagnosis
- Share educational materials to help you understand your condition
Beyond medical issues, navigators can help patients with other situations that can intrude on treatments – like arranging transportation for a patient to help them keep appointments or help those in economic need to apply for financial support.
Our oncology social worker improves the quality of life for patients and their loved ones by helping them manage financial concerns, access community resources, and adjust to their diagnosis and communicate it with family and friends. The social worker addresses non-medical issues that can complicate treatment for cancer patients.
Cancer treatment can debilitate patients, so it is important to make sure they get the proper nutrition. Our oncology registered dietitian helps oncology patients get the right nutrition before, during, and after treatment by offering:
- Nutrition counseling and meal plans
- Programs and classes
- Tube feeding management
Cancer can cause emotional stress and instability. You may feel angry, sad, worried, or overwhelmed. A clinical psychologist can help you through treatment and recovery by providing emotional and spiritual support. Our psychologist’s goal is to help you manage the challenges of dealing with cancer that can make daily life difficult. Counseling offers immediate and long-term support by helping cancer patients and their families learn skills for:
- Emotional expression
- Problem solving
- Stress reduction
- Improved well-being
Chaplains dedicated to serving hospital patients are available to provide spiritual counseling and support. Nondenominational and interfaith in approach, chaplains offer patients, family members, and caregivers a chance to reflect on their spiritual concerns and gain strength from their beliefs. Grady’s Goddard Chapel also provides patients and loved ones a place for prayer, worship and quiet time.
Different cancers and their treatments may produce symptoms and side effects that can create difficulties for patients. We offer programs to help patients overcome them, including:
- Cancer-Related Fatigue: Grady offers fatigue-management assistance provided by a physical therapist.
- Voice, Throat, Memory Issues: These problems, which are common in cases of head and neck cancer, can be improved with the help of speech and language pathologists.
- Lymphedema Management: Lymphedema or swelling often occurs following cancer surgeries or radiation treatments. This swelling may range from mild to severe and sometimes causes discomfort. Grady’s certified lymphedema specialists provide treatment to help you feel better.
- Post-Surgery Arm Conditions: Breast cancer patients often require physical therapy to improve their arm motion and strength. Grady physical therapists help patients restore maximum mobility.
Regardless of the cause of cancer, early detection is key. Grady offers affordable screenings to detect disease before clinical signs or symptoms appear. The goal is to find cancer early, when it’s most treatable. Screenings are available for the following cancers:
Exams include mammograms, prostate specific antigen (PSA) blood tests, colonoscopies, skin cancer and low-dose CT scans for lung cancer. For more information or to schedule a screening, call (404) 616-1000.
Our support groups help cancer patients manage the challenges they experience by creating opportunities for patients and former patients to meet and discuss their issues with experienced medical professionals who can offer advice and counsel. Multiple support groups meet each month:
- Radiation Oncology Support Group
- New Beginning Breast Cancer Support Group
- The New You Survivorship Clinic Support Group
- Cancer General Support Group
- New Patient Orientation
If you need more information about our support groups, ask your navigator or check the Cancer Center calendar for schedule details.
Sometimes, cancer treatments result in body changes. To help patients cope with these changes, the center provides special services and products, including mastectomy bras, foam and silicone breast prosthesis, camisoles, wigs, and lymphedema compression garments. Some products may be available at no cost. Please talk to your navigator or social worker for a referral.
Learning More About Your Disease
We understand that you may have a lot of questions about your diagnosis and treatment. While your medical team can offer a lot of useful information, you may want to learn more. Grady offers two important sources of information:
- Cancer Center Library. The cancer center’s library has many resources to answer your questions about cancer, treatment, coping and general health concerns.
- Patient Education Seminars. An education and event calendar is always available at check-in or in the waiting room.
Visit Grady’s Health Library
Patient & Family Orientation
We know a cancer diagnosis can be overwhelming. That’s why we are here to guide and support you at every step of the way.
Patient & Family Advisory Council
The Cancer Center’s Patient & Family Advisory Council allows patients, family members, and caregivers to collaborate in our policy and program decision-making to improve safety, quality, and patient experience. Volunteer Advisors meet monthly with Grady staff to enhance the experience for our cancer patients, family members, and care partners.
Involving patients and family members in our center’s performance improvement initiatives helps:
- Improve care services
- Increase patient & staff satisfaction
- Bring new perspectives to our health care operations
Former and existing Cancer Center patients, family members, and care partners are encouraged to participate. If you are interested in learning more about becoming a patient-family advisor, please contact Benjamin Souter, GCCE Public Education & Outreach Coordinator at [email protected] or by calling (404) 489-9161.