Cancer patients, who have compromised immune systems, are becoming more vulnerable as the COVID-19 crisis grows, unemployment rates increase, and health insurance coverage fades away. The American Cancer Society is assisting cancer patients and their families during these challenging times.
By calling a 24/7 cancer helpline, patients can connect to trained cancer information specialists. Specialists give accurate, up-to-date information and find valuable services and resources for patients, caregivers, family members, and health care providers. They can be contacted at 1-800-227-2345 or via live chat here. Resources can also be found here.
Patients can also receive health insurance assistance, including individualized information and resources to help navigate the health insurance system. Cancer patients can connect with a specialist who works to address their needs related to health insurance coverage such as seeking coverage, losing it, or experiencing life changes that impact health insurance status.
Because in-person support groups have been halted, patients can rely on ACS virtual support groups. The Reach to Recovery program connects new breast cancer patients with survivors who have had a similar diagnosis and treatment plan. With Cancer Survivors Network, cancer patients find others with similar experiences and interests on discussion boards, in chat rooms, and build a personal support network.
ACS also provides several other support tools. A personal health manager tracks and organizes information about cancer diagnoses and treatment options. A video series helps individuals navigate caregiving for their loved ones, along with giving them self-care strategies. ‘Springboard Beyond Cancer’ teaches cancer patients tips to help manage common cancer-related problems and concerns.