SL office closed, but cancer support available

Thursday, December 16, 2004

Although the Storm Lake Office of the American Cancer Society has been closed due to budget reallocations, it is still possible for local cancer patients to have one-on-one support. If you or someone you know has cancer, a toll-free call to 1.800.ACS.2345 will put you in touch with an American Cancer Society Navigator. The American Cancer Society Navigator program can help anyone affected by cancer sort through the emotions and issues of the disease. Navigators provide a link between a cancer patient and community resources such as transportation, lodging, or specific cancer information.

Navigators offer free, confidential assistance to cancer patients and their caregivers. Individuals can discuss any personal experience or situation with a Navigator, who is trained to listen and put together a plan of action for those affected. Cancer information can empower patients to make better, informed treatment and quality of life decisions.

"As Navigators, our goal is to empower individuals with information and resources that will in turn, increase confidence and ability to cope with the disease as well as reduce anxiety and suffering," said Marilyn Wunsch, American Cancer Society Navigator. "Providing support and education for the patients' family members and persons within their support network will hopefully relieve stress making them stronger for attending to the patient's needs as well as their own."

The American Cancer Society Navigators provide services ranging from durable medical equipment to transportation, as well as support services like the American Cancer Society's Look Good...Feel Better and Reach to Recovery programs. Navigators also have information on local community resources that are available to patients as well. Last year, the Navigator program individualized one-on-one assistance and emotional support, to thousands of cancer patients in Iowa, Minnesota, South Dakota and Wisconsin.

In addition, American Cancer Society Navigators recognize the unique impact that childhood cancer has on kids and their families and can provide information for families about children's oncology camps and post-secondary youth scholarships for survivors of childhood cancer.

The American Cancer Society is dedicated to research, education, advocacy and service.

If you or someone you know has been touched cancer, call 1.800.ACS.2345 and ask for a Navigator in your community, or visit theweb site at www.cancer.org

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