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Colorectal Cancer: Managing Your Medical Care: Diagnosis to Treatment: Stage IV

Take Someone With You To Doctor Appointments (Patient Advocates)

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A person who accompanies a patient to doctor visits is generally referred to as a Patient Advocate.

Experience indicates that having someone with you is particularly important for the initial meeting with a  medical oncologist or surgeon . Patient advocates can help ask questions, help remember what the doctor said, and review the meeting with you afterward. 

To learn more about patient advocates, including the qualities to look for in the person, and what to discuss with the person, see the document noted in "To Learn More."

Many cancer centers have patient navigators or oncology nurse navigators that are available to you to help guide and assist you as you navigate the healthcare system.  The Oncology Nurse Navigator is provided free of charge by hospitals and treatment centers..  For more information about Oncology Nurse Navigators go to offsite link.

Professional patient advocates are another option that is available if needed.  These advocates generally charge a fee for their services.  To learn about the value of a patient advocate and how to choose a patient advocate click here. For information about professional advocates, click here

NOTE: If you record the conversation, you and your navigator can review what was said after the meeting. Recorders are inexpensive. You may even have one on your mobile telephone.

To Learn More

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