By Bayan Raji, Staff Writer
Questions about treatment options and resources often accompany a cancer diagnosis, and many people look for answers on the Internet.
While it is home to numerous reliable, informative sites, the Internet also contains misleading or unreliable sources. Sometimes it's difficult to know where to turn for accurate answers to difficult questions.
Service provides reliable information
AskMDAnderson puts the front door of M. D. Anderson only an e-mail or a phone call away. This reliable source of information has helped more than 700,000 people since it was established in 1995.
AskMDAnderson can help prospective patients:
• Find accurate cancer information
• Make an appointment
• Understand treatment options
• Learn about research studies
• Navigate M. D. Anderson's Internet site
• Learn about and use patient resources
• Locate community cancer resources
Accurate info is key
AskMDAnderson representatives are trained by an oncology educator, and they take part in regular training to keep up to date on treatment options and clinical trials.
"Patients are much more informed when they go into their first appointment than they were 10 or 15 years ago," says Jennifer Kennedy-Stovall, associate director in the Public Education Office at M. D. Anderson and head of askMDAnderson. "We help educate people by being a trustworthy source of information about potential treatments and options."
Answers ease treatment
Kennedy-Stovall says the most common question askMDAnderson specialists hear is, "How do I become a patient at M. D. Anderson?"
"It's important for people to contact us in the very beginning because we can make sure they get to the next step in a timely manner," she says. "We can get them to the right place and answer questions they have along the way. If we don't know the answer to something, then we'll find out."
Prospective patients can call askMDAnderson at 1-877-MDA-6789, Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Central Standard Time (CST). Questions also can be submitted online and are answered in a timely manner.
M. D. Anderson resources:
Frequently Asked Questions
Gateways to Care (Conquest magazine)
AskMDAnderson Helps Navigate Cancer Journey
By Bayan Raji, Staff Writer
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