Importance of Following Your Treatment Plan
Breast cancer treatment is most effective when all parts of the treatment plan are completed. So, it’s important to follow the treatment plan (for medications and other therapies) prescribed by your health care provider in terms of:
Following your treatment plan
For example, when :
- You are prescribed (or recommended) to take medications over a long period of time
- You are prescribed (or recommended) to go to treatments over a long time, especially if you live far away
- You have side effects from treatment
Even though it may be hard, it’s important to follow your treatment plan.
Medications, such as oral chemotherapy and hormone therapy (tamoxifen and aromatase inhibitors), only work when taken as prescribed. And radiation therapy is most effective when you finish the entire course.
Learn about getting high-quality care (quality of care).
Talking with health care providers
It’s good to be honest with your health care provider about whether or not you’re taking your medication as prescribed.
If your health care provider believes you’re taking all of your medication, and you aren’t, this can cause problems. For example, if a medication doesn’t appear to be working, your health care provider may think it’s due to the medication itself (when instead the medication wasn’t taken as prescribed).
In this case, your health care provider may decide to try a different type of treatment when a change wasn’t needed.
If you have side effects, tell your health care provider right away. They may be able to help. Having fewer side effects can help you complete your treatment.
Learn more about talking with your health care provider.
Managing practical needs
You may have practical challenges to completing treatment, such as:
- Travel to and from treatment (and travel costs)
- Child or elder care during treatment
- Medication costs
Your health care provider may be able to help. Hospital discharge planners, social workers and patient navigators at your hospital or managed care organization may be helpful too.
Learn about financial assistance for child and elder care costs.
Susan G. Komen®‘s Patient Navigator Program
Komen Patient Navigators can help guide you through the health care system. They can help to remove barriers to high-quality breast care. For example, they can help you with insurance, local resources, communication with health care providers and more.
Call the Komen Breast Care Helpline at 1-877 GO KOMEN (1-877-465-6636) or email email@example.com to learn more about our Patient Navigator program, including eligibility.
Se habla español.
Komen Financial Assistance Program
Susan G. Komen® created the Komen Financial Assistance Program to help those struggling with the costs of breast cancer treatment by providing financial assistance to eligible individuals.
Funding is available for eligible individuals undergoing breast cancer treatment at any stage or living with metastatic breast cancer (stage 4).
Se habla español.
Prescription drug assistance
Prescription drug costs can quickly become a financial burden for you and your family.
Medicare and many insurance companies offer prescription drug plans. One may already be included in your policy, or you may be able to buy an extra plan for prescriptions.
Some drugs have a generic form. Generic drugs cost less than the name brands but are just as effective.
You may also qualify for programs that help with drug costs or offer low-cost or free prescriptions.
Susan G. Komen® Breast Care Helpline
Calls to the Komen Breast Care Helpline are answered by trained specialists and oncology social workers Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. ET. The helpline provides free, professional support services to anyone who has questions or concerns about breast cancer, including people diagnosed with breast cancer and their families.
Call the helpline at 1-877 GO KOMEN (1-877-465-6636) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Se habla español.