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Sibley Memorial Hospital

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Center for Patient and Family Services

Support Services Team

Patients and families who cope with cancer face many challenges. We believe that the more our patients know about their cancer and its treatment, the more equipped they are to actively participate in their care. The Center for Patient and Family Services offers a variety of resources to assist patients and families during this time. Click here for a calendar of events and support programs.

Social Work

Phone: 202-243-2274

Oncology Social Work provides for the psychological, social, emotional and practical needs of cancer patients and their families. A social worker can teach you how to manage the stress and changes that may come with cancer. In addition, social worker-led support group meetings are available. Click here for a calendar of events and support programs.

Contact an oncology social worker to:

  • Learn how to talk about cancer with family members, children, friends, employers and your health care team
  • Help you manage feelings of anxiety, fear, sadness, anger, worry or depression that can be associated with a cancer diagnosis and treatment
  • Help you become familiar with the hospital environment Learn the best ways to talk with your health care team
  • Learn new ways of coping with stress
  • Help organize your family life around cancer treatment
  • Connect you with services which may help you during and after cancer treatment, such as resource and transportation services and education about home care, hospice and palliative care  
  • Help with financial counseling

Cancer Survivorship

Phone: 202-243-2320

At the Kimmel Cancer Center at Sibley Memorial Hospital, we believe that survivorship begins on the day of cancer diagnosis. Our health care providers work with newly diagnosed patents to ensure that their life goals remain on track when possible. We don’t want cancer patients jut to survive – we want them to thrive. Beyond treating and managing patients’ cancer, we offer many resources and services – () to help patients and co-survivors cope with the issues at hand, whether they are treatment decision-making, self-care management, psychological and relationship concerns, treatment side effects, financial issues or impact on employment. We are committed to developing innovative ways to further improve life during and after cancer treatment.

Patient Navigation

Phone: 202-370-6545

Cancer patients face many challenges when trying to understand and navigate the health care system. These challenges begin at the time of diagnosis and continue throughout care continuum. Our cancer nurse navigators, often referred to by our patients as a “cancer coach,” provides support, resources and care coordination from diagnosis to returning to life after cancer treatment. Patients often say they feel more prepared to handle what may lie ahead with the partnership of a navigator.

Your cancer nurse navigator will:

  • Coordinate your care to ensure timely access and smooth transitions
  • Facilitate communication among patients, providers and other agencies to optimize your care
  • Prepare you and your loved ones on what to expect
  • Work in collaboration with our oncology social workers to address financial and insurance concerns
  • Connect you to oncology social work, nutrition and other support services as needed
  • Provide education about treatment, medication and disease side effects
  • Connect you to post-treatment survivorship resources

Nutrition Counseling

Phone: 202-537-4742

During an individual nutrition consult, the oncology dietitian will provide an assessment of your diet, provide suggestions and strategies to help manage side effects, better tolerate treatment and meet your specific dietary needs and goals.

In addition, the dietician will help to decipher and answer questions about the large amount of conflicting nutrition information that is available via internet, magazines and other sources. Consults are also available after a patient has completed treatment. Sibley recognized that a cancer diagnosis may create physical, emotional and psychosocial changes leaving survivors feeling vulnerable. Nutrition counseling can help you deal with these issues by incorporating positive changes in diet and lifestyle.

Palliative Care

Palliative care is specialized medical care for patients with serious illness. This type of care is focused on providing patients with relief from the symptoms, pain and stress of a cancer diagnosis. The goal is to improve quality of life for both the patient and the patient’s family and is appropriate at any age and at any stage of a serious illness. It can be provided together with curative treatment.

Palliative care benefits include:

  • Expert treatment of our pain and other symptoms (such as poor appetite, nausea, vomiting, constipation)
  • Clear communication
  • Dedicated time with you and your family to consider treatment preferences and navigating the health care system
  • Assistance with coordination your care with all your health care providers
  • Guidance in considering difficult decisions and understanding complex information
  • Emotional and spiritual support for you and your family

The Palliative Care program at Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center at Sibley consists of two options:

Inpatient consults: Available for patients in Sibley Hospital and their families. Ask your doctor or nurse to speak with a palliative care professional.

Outpatient Oncology Palliative Care and Symptom Consultation Clinic: The clinic offers services to patients of the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center at Sibley. Services include comprehensive management of physical, psychological and spiritual needs of cancer patients and their families, focused on improving quality of life. Patients and caregivers are encouraged to speak to their oncologist regarding the benefits of palliative care and for a referral.

Spiritual Support

Phone: 202-537-4084

Spiritual Support is another service offered at the Kimmel Cancer Center at Sibley. Whether you are newly diagnosed or in remission, we understand that you may struggle to understand why this has happened to you, feelings of guilt, anger, grief, or isolation from your faith community. We promote the spiritual care of persons as an essential dimension of the total care and services provided by Sibley. Our dedicated chaplains provide spiritual support to people of all faith traditions and are readily available for spiritual counsel, prayer, emotional support or a nonjudgmental presence while you work through any worries or concerns that may arise during your cancer care.

The chapel is located on the first floor of the Main Hospital, next to the main elevators. The interfaith chapel is open 24 hours a day for prayer, meditation and solace. Community worship service is offered in the chapel on Sundays at 11 a.m. for all faith groups. Roman Catholic Mass is held on Wednesdays at 12:30 p.m. and Sundays at 12:30 p.m. All are welcome. For patients who cannot attend these services in person, tune in to channel 14 for a broadcast in any inpatient hospital room.