Social work

Cancer is more than a physical disease. It’s a full range of concerns and issues for the cancer survivor and his or her loved ones.

The oncology social workers at the Northwell Health Cancer Institute are an important part of the multidisciplinary care team. They have a broad understanding of cancer, cancer treatment, survivorship, community resources, palliative care, hospice care and bereavement. Clinical social workers serve as a liaison between patients, the healthcare system and the community.

Based on each patient’s specific needs, social workers will help identify appropriate resources. Oncology social workers can assist with:

  • Individual, marital and family counseling
  • Oncology support groups
  • Patient education
  • Stress management
  • Coping skills
  • Communication with healthcare team
  • Transportation resources
  • Financial support programs
  • On-site and community-based support programs
  • Mental health referrals
  • Navigating resources within Northwell Health
  • Referrals to community-based resources
  • Quality-of-life issues

When appropriate, they also offer assistance with:

  • Supportive care for living with cancer
  • Home healthcare referrals
  • Hospice care referrals
  • End-of-life issues

Nutrition

Proper nutrition is essential to cancer prevention and an important part of cancer treatment. Northwell Health Cancer Institute dietitians provide expert nutrition assessment and counseling to patients and their families.

Important education about cancer and nutrition is provided to patients by registered dieticians experienced in the special needs of cancer patients. The dietitians – experts in food and nutrition and backed by extensive training – will assess, guide and counsel patients in:

  • Cancer prevention through nutrition
  • Therapeutic diets
  • Nutrition build-up prior to and during therapy
  • Management of treatment side effects
  • Nutrition education for patients, families, caregivers
  • Dietary/supplemental intake evaluation

Cancer support groups

Joining a cancer support group can be one of the best ways to cope with diagnosis, treatment and post-treatment issues. Support groups allow patients to connect with others who are going through the same experience and empower them to move beyond a diagnosis and face the challenges, head on.

Learn more about current support groups.

Screenings

Northwell Health provides free breast, cervical and colorectal cancer screening services for uninsured/underinsured Nassau and Queens county residents, between the ages of 50 and 64, through funding from the Cancer Services Program, NY State Department of Health. For information on eligibility and to make an appointment please call (718) 470-4165.

Listed below are the annual outcomes of the free cancer screening services provided for Nassau and Queens county residents:

  2013 2014 2015
Clinical Breast Exams (CBE) 299 224 178
Postive CBE 6 11 11
Mammograms 328 224 170
Diagnostic Imaging 102 103 79
Breast Cancers Detected 3 4 2
       
Fecal Kits Given 169 112 73
# Returned 66 70 55
Positive FIT 2 6 5
Colorectal Cancers Detected 1 0 0
       
# Pap Tests 152 108 70
Positive Pap Tests 6 3 6
Cervical Cancer Detected 0 1 3

*The cancer screening program at Northwell Health is also generously supported by The Greater NYC Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure.

Northwell Health provides free breast and colorectal screening services for uninsured/underserved patients in the northern Westchester catchment area at Northern Westchester Hospital. Funding for the programs are made available through the Cancer Service Program, the Avon Foundation, NYS Department of Health and NWH Charity Program. For information on eligibility and to make an appointment please call the Program Navigator at 914.666.1289.

Listed below are the annual outcomes of the free cancer screening services provided for the northern Westchester catchment area:

  2013 2014 2015
Breast Health Initiative Program      
Clinical Breast Exams (CBE) 67 48 60
Mammograms 709 513 461
Diagnostic Imaging 304 256 215
Breast Cancers Detected 6 5 2
       
GI Clinic      
Colonoscopy 36 31 25
Endoscopy 38 33 35
Total Pts. Seen 291 253 251
Cancers Detected 0 0 0

In addition to the no-cost screening programs, the Northwell Health offers free community screening events. To find when a free community screening event is offered go to the community events calendar.

Listed below are outcomes of these screening events.

Northwell Health System Free Community Cancer Screening Events Held in 2015

Free Community Screening Events Number of People Screened Number of Abnormal Results and Referred for Follow-up
Skin Cancer Screenings    
Forrest Hills Hospital 29 0
Glen Cove Hospital 10 0
Phelps Memorial Hospital 57 5
Southside Hospital 23 12
Staten Island University Hospital 20 3
Head and Neck Cancers Screening    
North Shore University Hospital/LIJ Medical Center 66 22
Plainview Hospital 9 8
Staten Island University Hospital 16 8
Lung Cancer Screenings    
Forest Hills Hospital 132 43
Glen Cove Hospital 21 1
Northern Westchester Hospital 19 7

Northwell Health System Free Community Cancer Screening Events Held in 2014

Free Community Screening Events Number of People Screened Number of Abnormal Results and Referred for Follow-up
Skin Cancer Screenings    
Southside Hospital 42 16
Staten Island University Hospital 14 7
Head and Neck Cancers Screening    
North Shore University Hospital/LIJ Medical Center 61 10
Plainview Hospital 12 0
Staten Island University Hospital 10 5
Staten Island University Hospital - Oral Cancer 13 2
Lung Cancer Screenings    
Forest Hills Hospital 110 94

Northwell Health System Free Community Cancer Screening Events Held in 2013

Free Community Screening Events Number of People Screened Number of Abnormal Results and Referred for Follow-up
Skin Cancer Screenings    
Southside Hospital 46 26
Huntington Hospital 128 34
Staten Island University Hospital 34 4
Forest Hills Hospital 14 0
Head and Neck Cancers Screening    
North Shore University Hospital/LIJ Medical Center 60 10
Plainview Hospital 12 0
Colorectal Screening - Fecal Occult Kits Distributed and Returned    
Huntington Hospital (53 kits distributed/15 returned) 13 0

Webinar

The role of nutrition in cancer prevention

Toward a Cure

Read the summer 2015 issue of Toward a Cure, a publication of Northwell Health Cancer Institute.