Archive for Care for children

Better Coverage for Oral Chemo: Why It Matters

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When Gov. Deval Patrick signed an oral chemotherapy parity bill into law on January 5, Massachusetts joined more than 20 states requiring health plans to cover oral cancer pills at a rate no less favorable than standard intravenous (IV) chemotherapy. The new law tells insurers that they cannot require higher patient costs for oral chemotherapy, and it helps ensure that all forms of chemotherapy are accessible and affordable to Massachusetts cancer patients. Read more

How to Protect Cancer Patients from Flu

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by Saul Weingart, MD, PhD

Flu has arrived in the northeast with a vengeance. The City of Boston declared the flu epidemic a public health emergency. Perhaps someone you know has been sick with the flu.

Influenza can be serious for anyone, but for a cancer patient, the stakes are higher. Read more

Death Rates from Cancer Continue to Drop, Some Types Can Be Prevented

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Faced with an abundance of cancer stories in the news and our own personal experiences with cancer, we may fear that there’s a growing “epidemic” of the disease.

Not so. A new report says that overall, deaths from cancer are continuing to decline, as they have for nearly two decades. Read more

Pediatrics and Gene Therapy: A Conversation with David Williams

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For David Williams, MD, the field of pediatrics offers two great attractions.

“It is wonderful because of the kinds of patients you take care of,” he says. “But also because of the personalities of pediatricians – in pediatrics you find very compassionate and caring people.” Williams embodies that compassion and combines it with a drive to solve the medical problems of young patients, often with the use of cutting-edge technology.

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Full Circle: The Journey from Patient to Caregiver

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by Sara Dickison Taylor

You wouldn’t be able to tell just by meeting them, but high-school student Molly Callahan and Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center nurse Lindsay Roache, RN, have a few things in common: They’ve survived cancer, and they’re committed to helping others. Read more

Coping with the Holidays When Grief Is New

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It’s hard to believe that the holidays are upon us – again. The stores are overflowing with holiday goods as families gear up for their celebrations.

However, if someone you love has recently died, thinking about the holidays may bring you anguish. What were once happy times might now fill you with tremendous sadness and heartache. You may even wish that this year, you could skip the holidays all together. Read more

Why You Need a Health Care Proxy

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What would happen if you were accidentally knocked unconscious and had to be taken to the emergency room? Would doctors know who to go to with questions about your care?

A health care proxy form is a legal document that names a trusted person who can make medical decisions for you if you are unable to speak for yourself. Read more

If You Build It, They Will Come: Cancer Care in Rwanda

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by Barbara Virchick

On July 18, 2012, a Cancer Center of Excellence opened in Butaro, Rwanda, as a collaboration between Partners In Health and Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women’s Cancer Center. I was fortunate to have been there during this exciting time, working as part of a three-month fellowship to help train the nursing staff to care for Rwandan cancer patients.

I don’t think any of us were prepared for the explosion of patients who would arrive during the first month we were open. Read more

Stem Cell vs. Bone Marrow Transplant: What’s the Difference?

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With Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Boston Children’s Hospital, Dana-Farber has performed thousands of stem cell/bone marrow transplants for adult and pediatric patients with blood cancers and other serious illnesses.

What’s the difference between these two terms? As it turns out, the only real distinction is in the method of collecting the stem cells.

Let’s start with the basics. Read more

Nine Tips for Talking To Kids About Cancer

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 Helping a loved one face cancer is never easy, but the challenge is especially daunting when the patient is your own child. Our clinicians at Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center work with pediatric cancer patients and their families every day. Lisa Diller, MD, Anna Muriel, MD, and Jorge Fernandez, LCSW – offer these 9 tips for talking with your children about their illness.           

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