February 10, 2011

New website connects those impacted by cancer

New website connects those impacted by cancer

Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center has joined with the national CancerConnect.com initiative to launch a new online community for people impacted by cancer, including patients, family members, friends and advocates.

Participants don't have to be a VICC patient or family member to join the online community, which is available at www.cancerconnect.com/Vanderbilt.

There they can share stories, ask questions and learn from the experiences of others.

“People with cancer and their caregivers need ongoing access to support; not just during a brief office visit with their medical team, but when they go home and do research,” said Debra Friedman, M.D., medical director of the Vanderbilt REACH for Survivorship Program.

“Increasingly, online communities and social networks are playing an important role in connecting survivors, caregivers and others who are dealing with similar issues, fears and challenges.

“We are pleased to offer this opportunity not only to the patients and caregivers being served by our center, but to any survivor or caregiver who is seeking support from a community of others who share their interests,” Friedman said.

As a part of this program, members of the Vanderbilt community are invited to participate in more than 30 national communities for specific types of cancer, as well as groups focused on care giving, health and wellness, clinical trials, insurance, nutrition and survivorship.

VICC physicians and other experts will occasionally serve as guest moderators and hosts on topics of interest to the cancer community.