How to Select an Oncologist
Immediately following a cancer diagnosis, a referral to an oncologist is often made. This is a very fast-moving, scary, confusing, and intimidating time for recently diagnosed patients, which unfortunately doesn’t always allow patients to think straight and make the decision that is best for them.
With so many moving pieces and information flying in one ear and out the other, you may take the first oncologist that is “handed” to you. It is critical within this preliminary phase, that you stop, take a deep breath, and select the oncologist that you wish to work with for what may be a long journey ahead.
In addition to a positive recommendation or referral being made, be sure to ask the following:
- Is the oncologist board certified?
- Does the oncologist’s education and training meet my needs?
- Does this oncologist specialize in my particular type of cancer?
- What hospital is the oncologist associated with?
- Upon meeting the oncologist, do I personally like him/her? Are they someone I will feel comfortable with moving forward?
- Can the oncologist provide a track record of successful treatments?
- Can the oncologist refer me to past patients for testimonials regarding their experience?
- Does the oncologist’s practice accept my insurance?
- What are the practice’s office hours? How far is the commute from my home?
- How long will it take to get an appointment?
- How do they interact with my beliefs, values, family and other medical team members?
It is often within the oncologist selection phase that our team meets new clients. RN Cancer Guides’ name says it all – We guide patients through this difficult decision! As registered oncology nurses ourselves, we’re familiar with many of the area’s hospitals, oncology practices, and doctors. We hear firsthand from patients (our clients) how their experiences have been and can point you in the direction that is best for you and your treatment!
To learn more, contact RN Cancer Guides today: 813.360.1145.