Patient Family Education and Navigation

Understanding the details of a cancer diagnosis and its treatments can be overwhelming, not just for children, but for parents and siblings as well. Our educator and navigator guide families through this stressful time, helping them access information, training and other resources while creating a personalized action plan specific to the family and the child’s diagnosis.

The Patient and Family Educator would:

  • Guide the child and family during their journey through treatment as childhood cancer is one that requires understanding of a large volume of new information related to the specific cancer diagnosis and treatment. How to best navigate the often complex and stressful care environment can be difficult. A Patient and Family Educator is well-suited to assist during this extended period.
  • Heller Learning for Living Center Provide basic education to the patient and family regarding the clinic and hospital personnel and operations, the relationship with St. Jude, and immediate expectations around specific diagnostic and treatment needs
  • Educate the patient and family on specific cancer diagnosis content, psychosocial issues, and anticipatory guidance related to disease, treatment, acute and long-term effects, hospitalization, procedures and psychosocial adaptation
  • Identify educational needs of the patient and family through a family assessment and collaboration with clinic physicians and staff
  • Facilitate learning by gaining understanding of the family’s ability to learn, cultural and religious practices, emotional barriers, desire and motivation to learn, physical and/or cognitive limitations, language barriers, and readiness to learn
  • Encourage participation in decision-making about health care options by facilitating the patient's and family’s understanding of the child’s health status
  • Maximize care skills by increasing the patient’s and family’s ability to cope with the child’s health status/prognosis/outcome
  • Select, adapt, and individualize patient education information for the patient and family by evaluating available brochures, printed materials, video tapes, and external resources in light of the age, culture, religious practices, and language of the patient and family
  • Develop, implement, and evaluate new patient and family educational programming, including structured teaching tools