You will likely have many appointments during the course of your cancer journey, ranging from chemotherapy and radiation therapy to follow-up appointments and additional appointments with genetic counselors and SurvivorPLACE, our support service for people with cancer. The information here will help you know what to expect at your initial appointment with a cancer doctor.
What to bring:
- Insurance card
- List of current medications and any drug allergies
- List of any questions you have related to your health condition
- Photo ID
- Insurance referrals
- Copies of lab reports, X-rays or other tests if you have them
- Your spouse or significant other
- Health questionnaire
- A health questionnaire is currently sent to patients to complete in advance of the first appointment. If the turnaround time from appointment scheduling to actual appointment does not permit mailing, you may be asked to arrive early to complete this information at the time of your visit.
What to expect
- Expect to have a physical examination.
- You will meet with a team of people, including medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, surgeons, nurses and others all on the same day. They will guide you through the options available and recommend the best course of care for you. You also will be connected with a social worker, financial counselor, genetic counselor and other members of our cancer support team if you would like.
- Ask questions. Your health care provider should fully explain your condition and discuss the pros and cons of the proposed treatments or tests in simple terms. Make sure you understand your condition and your treatment options before you leave the office. Don’t be timid or embarrassed; keep asking questions until you understand. Your health may depend on understanding what is being said.
- You will leave your appointment with your next steps finalized, such as a date for surgery or with scheduled dates for radiation therapy, chemotherapy or other treatments.