Breast Care Nurse Navigator for MedWest-Harris and MedWest-Swain helps cancer patients and their families throughout diagnosis and treatment
SYLVA, N.C. – At MedWest-Harris and MedWest-Swain, women coping with the diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer have a unique professional advocate on their healthcare team.
Since December, MedWest Health System Breast Care Nurse Navigator Mary Mahon, R.N., has been based at MedWest-Harris and MedWest-Swain, helping support and guide breast cancer patients and their families through their course of medical care.
“Most people say that just knowing someone was there for them makes all the difference,” said Mahon, who has been a nurse for 37 years. “Being a nurse navigator isn’t just about hand-holding. It’s about compassionately and efficiently delivering care.”
One patient Mahon is assisting through her plan of care is June Stewart of Whittier, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in May at the age of 68 and has been treated with surgeries and chemotherapy.
Stewart described the Breast Care Nurse Navigator help as “just marvelous.” Stewart said she was grateful for the help Mahon gave her with coordinating her appointments, suggesting support groups and literally holding her hand during medical procedures.
The Breast Care Nurse Navigators program is a free service offered as part of MedWest Health System’s comprehensive breast health program which focuses on prevention, detection and treatment of breast diseases and conditions.
Breast Care Nurse Navigators assist with or coordinate patient appointments; develop educational materials for patient and family members; assess the medical, emotional and social needs of their patients; and work with medical staff to monitor and track patient care. Fellow professionals they work with include board-certified surgeons, medical oncologists and radiation oncologists.
Since the beginning of the year, the Nurse Navigators have worked with more than 800 patients in the MedWest Health System.
For more information about MedWest Health System’s Breast Care Nurse Navigators program at MedWest-Harris and MedWest-Swain, contact Mary Mahon at (828) 631-8100 or Mary_mahon@westcare.org.
MedWest Health System’s breast health program includes the use of such advanced diagnostic technology as digital mammography, breast MRI and stereotactic breast imaging.
All October, MedWest Health System is raising awareness about breast cancer prevention and treatment through its Fall Fight campaign.
Visit www.medwesthealth.com for more information about the Fall Fight campaign and about MedWest Health System’s breast health program.
Diagnosed with breast cancer in spring 2011, Whittier resident June Stewart, right, has received guidance throughout her treatment from MedWest Breast Care Nurse Navigator Mary Mahon, left.