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MY CANCER GUIDE: NEW ONLINE EDUCATION TOOL FOR REGIONAL CANCER CARE NORTHWEST PATIENTS

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 THUNDER BAY, ON  –-- January 18, 2013 –  The Regional Cancer Program at Thunder Bay MY CANCER GUIDERegional Health Sciences Centre is launching MyCancerGuide™, an online resource customized for patients and families of Regional Cancer Care Northwest (RCC NW). My Cancer Guide™ is an online educational tool developed for people affected by cancer. It provides support and information to make practical and difficult decisions throughout a patient’s cancer journey in nine cancer sites.

PHOTO  L-R: Dr. Mark Henderson, Executive Vice-President Chronic Disease Prevention and Management and Regional Vice President Cancer Care Ontario, celebrates the launch of My Cancer Guide with Kathy Forbes, Patient and Family Advisor and member of the Patient and Family Cancer Partnership, and Jack Digital CEO Murray Rochon.

“My Cancer Guide is an excellent example of how TBRHSC is tailoring its healthcare strategies to respond to patient needs,” says Dr. Mark Henderson, Executive Vice-President Chronic Disease Prevention and Management and Regional Vice President Cancer Care Ontario. “We are evolving from a disease-centred approach of simply “fixing” patients toward treatment as a partnership between provider and patient to promote total well-being.”

My Cancer Guide is personally reviewed by Regional Cancer Care Northwest staff following evidence-based guidelines. It offers patients and families 24/7 access to content that addresses a comprehensive range of practical, psychosocial, medical, emotional, financial, family, and spiritual needs at any time in the cancer journey. Cancer patients are introduced to My Cancer Guide at cancer centre appointments and by other healthcare providers as they move through their journey.

“I find that My Cancer Guide complements my efforts to provide support for individuals and families affected by cancer,” says Dr. Dimitri Vergidis, TBRHSC Chief of Oncology. “This tool comes with practical paper forms that reinforce my discussions with patients and help them learn at an appropriate time, pace, and level.”

“It can really ease your mind when you have information that better explains your situation,” says Kathy Forbes, Patient and Family Advisor and member of the Patient and Family Cancer Partnership. “My Cancer Guide is very user-friendly. At any time during treatment you can get My Cancer Guide information from physicians, nurses, clerical, lab, and supportive care staff.”

My Cancer Guide is the strong core of RCC NW’s patient experience strategy that strives to ensure patients and families feel their informational and emotional needs are being met. Developed by Canadian company, Jack Digital Productions, RCC NW has worked closely to tailor this tool for cancer patients in the Northwest region.

“RCC NW has been an exceptional client for our company,” says Murray Rochon, President + CEO, Jack Digital Productions. “Their commitment to enhancing the patient experience has spurred improvements in the tool and we continue to work together to hone My Cancer Guide for the benefit of all cancer patients and their families.”

Healthy living is about making decisions. My Cancer Guide is entirely centered on giving cancer patients and their families the information they need to make practical decisions throughout treatment and recovery. The battle against cancer is intensely personal, but My Cancer Guide can help equip patients with the tools they need to make informed decisions even when choices are difficult and uncomfortable.

"We are extremely pleased to support My Cancer Guide through our community's contributions to the Northern Cancer Fund," says Brian McKinnon, Board Member and Past Chair of the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Foundation. "Today, more people are living with cancer than dying from it and we know that this new tool will assist patients and families as they embark on their cancer journey."

My Cancer Guide is available to cancer patients, families, and caregivers, as well as community partners, surgeons, and primary care providers throughout the Northwest.

 
BACKGROUNDER
My Cancer Guide – New online educational tool for RCC NW

What is My Cancer Guide?
My Cancer Guide is an evidence-based, clinically integrated online cancer support intervention that complements providers’ efforts to provide support for individuals and families affected by cancer. For healthcare professionals, it is a practical and consistent communication aid that reinforces the provider-patient discussion and initiates opportunities for learning at an appropriate time, pace, and level for patients and families. My Cancer Guide addresses a comprehensive range of practical, psychosocial, medical, emotional, financial, family, and spiritual needs across the cancer journey.

How will care providers use this online tool?
Providers – nurses, physicians, specialists, supportive care team – can use patient summary forms to support and summarize their interactions with patients and capture diagnosis information, detail next steps, and provide tailored access to My Cancer Guide online. My Cancer Guide will help make patient interactions more valuable by reducing repetitive education efforts and making patient visits more efficient by giving patients the information they need to be active participants in decision-making.

Benefits for patients
Patients use an access code to find disease site-specific answers to their questions and connect to local support resources. My Cancer Guide will:

• provide information to guide decision-making, illness management, follow-up care, life with cancer, and more
• build a sense of competence, empowerment and control in patients living with cancer
• support communication with family, work, and a patient’s care team
• give details of TBRHSC and RCC NW specific information – parking, directions, hours, etc
• connect patients to appropriate support services at different stages in their journey
• provide information to help deal with financial concerns
• increase confidence for patients to self-manage between visits

How is My Cancer Guide unique?
My Cancer Guide offers a consistent and unified framework that localizes and standardizes educational materials in a format that is easily accessible and flexible. The information on My Cancer Guide is medically reviewed by local RCC NW staff and is personally relevant to patients in Northwestern Ontario.

My Cancer Guide provides information for nine disease-specific sites:
 

Bladder Cancer
Colorectal Cancer
Ovarian Cancer

Blood Cancers
Lung Cancer
Prostate Cancer

Breast Cancer
Melanoma
Thyroid Cancer

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