Facing Cancer?

San Rafael, CA, September 23, 1997 — A diagnosis of cancer can be as devastating to family and friends as it is to patients themselves. Roles and relationships are dramatically affected as you and your loved ones confront the physical, emotional, social and financial demands that are part of a cancer diagnosis.

Making sure you receive the highest quality treatment in a managed care environment can create additional challenges. That's why more people are turning to independent advocacy programs like CareCounsel, LLC of San Rafael, CA to help them navigate a confusing health care world.

CareCounsel provides "CareCounseling" and healthcare advocacy services, printed health and disease information, and child and senior care referrals. It also has an innovative service for people facing cancer called Cancer Quality Care Review.

CareCounsel members with cancer have access to physician experts at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, rated as the # 1 cancer center by U.S. News and World Report. CareCounsel helps members gather their pathology slides, radiography reports and medical records for quality review. Members receive a detailed written report assessing their diagnosis and the accuracy, completeness and overall quality of their treatment plan. When Memorial Sloan-Kettering's reviewing physician or team of physicians determine that it is medically appropriate, the member receives information about other treatment options, as well.

"The quality of cancer care can vary dramatically from setting to setting," says Lawrence N. Gelb, DMH, CareCounsel's President. "Our program with Memorial Sloan-Kettering provides valuable tools to help people facing cancer make informed decisions with their physician about treatment options."

CareCounsel's supportive advocacy services help members with a variety of health access and quality issues everything from selecting a health plan or primary care doctor, to obtaining their medical records to filing an appeal of denied treatment. CareCounselors locate support groups, send tips on "How to Talk to Your Doctor", "How to Keep a Health Record", or "When Someone You Love Has Cancer" and identify additional resources. The childcare and senior care referral and education service can save time locating care for loved ones. For instance, a family might need additional childcare when a mother receives treatment. Or help identifying home care providers. Members can also obtain printed health and disease information from online databases and newsletters to learn more about their disease.

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