Foundation helps newly diagnosed cancer patients

February 25, 2009 12:37:52 PM PST
A new local foundation is helping people across the country deal with cancer. The Navigate Cancer Foundation offers a free consulting service online. The organization consults with patients and family members who are dealing with a cancer diagnosis.

AB11 News Anchor Angela Hampton experienced firsthand how the foundation works. Last fall, she received devastating news.

"My dad was diagnosed in August of last year with stage 4 lung cancer and it was a very aggressive type of cancer," Hampton said. "And so, you're not only frightened you're very overwhelmed by it."

That overwhelming feeling is something many dealing with cancer can relate to. But, Hampton found helping making sense of it online with the Navigate Cancer Foundation.

"They're just able to point you to so many resources in your community that you or your doctor may not be aware of," Hampton explained.

Two sisters in Apex, who lost their father to cancer, started the non-profit organization.

One of the women has been an oncology nurse practitioner for nearly 30 years.

"We provide free services so that's the first thing and patients have access to credentialed, professional, oncology experts in the field to help patients understand what's going on with their diagnosis and their treatment and empower them to ask the right questions," said Sharon Bigelow, Navigate Cancer Foundation founder.

So, whether you are a patient, a survivor or someone who has a family or friend diagnosed with cancer, the way the foundation works is you log on and you create an account.

All of the information you provide on the site is secure because it's health-related.

Patients can send the foundation information they don't understand, like medical scans.

The foundation started less than a year ago and already consults with people in the ten states, helping those like Hampton navigate an overwhelming disease.

"My dads doctors were wonderful, but you have so many questions that you'll sit in an appointment with the doctors and you think you understand it and you leave and then you realize you have more questions," Hampton explained. "Navigate Cancer, I think, is a really good supplement to the medical care."

For more information about the foundation, visit www.navigatecancerfoundation.org.


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