During the second half of 2013, four new guides to cancer, known collectively as the ASCO Answers Guides to Cancer, were released on Cancer.Net, ASCO’s patient information website. The guides to breast, prostate, lung, and colorectal cancer were completely redesigned and reimagined to help newly diagnosed patients better understand their diagnosis and treatment options.
These comprehensive, patient-friendly booklets not only contain the trusted information about diagnosis, treatment, side effects, and psychosocial effects found on Cancer.Net, but also allow patients to record the specifics of their individual diagnosis and treatment plan. Throughout each guide are questions patients can ask their health-care team, as well as space to write down the answers and make other notes. There are also check boxes oncologists and nurses can use to help their patients keep track of the tests, procedures, and treatments they will be receiving. This feature allows patients to easily go back and find the most pertinent information and talk about it with their friends and family members.
The Cancer.Net Editorial Board played a key role in the development and review of the new guides, including Robert S. Miller, MD, FACP, current Cancer.Net Editor-in-Chief; Richard M. Goldberg, MD, Associate Editor, Gastrointestinal Cancers; Maha Hussain, MD, Associate Editor, Genitourinary Cancers; David H. Johnson, MD, FACP, Associate Editor, Lung Cancer; Lidia Schapira, MD, Associate Editor, Psychosocial Oncology; and Diane Blum, MSW, former Cancer.Net Editor-in-Chief.
Introducing ASCO Answers
The development and release of the new guides launched the larger ASCO Answers redesign and rebranding effort. ASCO Answers started as a collection of one-page fact sheets on common cancer types and cancer-related topics. Then in late 2012, the name ASCO Answers was broadened to include all of the printed patient education materials found on Cancer.Net. Now, when patients and caregivers pick up a fact sheet, guide, or booklet and see ASCO Answers, they will know immediately that they are holding a trusted, high-quality resource reviewed and approved by ASCO experts.
As the ASCO Answers brand has expanded to include the guides and booklets, these materials have been updated with a fresh design and photos, many of which depict ASCO members in practice. By combining oncologist-approved information, a conversational tone, and a reassuring look and feel, the new ASCO Answers materials give patients and their caregivers the tools and resources they need to become active, informed participants in their cancer care.
Other ASCO Answers Guides
In addition to the new guides to breast, prostate, lung, and colorectal cancer, other recently updated ASCO Answers materials include the Advanced Cancer Care Planning and Managing the Cost of Cancer Care booklets. Advanced Cancer Care Planning is a compassionate, authoritative resource that assists patients and their families/caregivers in navigating the complex personal choices associated with an advanced cancer diagnosis. Managing the Cost of Cancer Care provides practical guidance for patients and families to help them identify medical and associated costs and better cope with the financial impact of a cancer diagnosis.
Download or Order Materials
The ASCO Answers guides to breast, prostate, lung, and colorectal cancer can be downloaded and printed for individual use at no cost from Cancer.Net (www.cancer.net/guides). Professionally printed copies of each guide can be purchased in packs of 50 from the ASCO University Bookstore (www.cancer.net/estore). Advanced Cancer Care Planning, Managing the Cost of Cancer Care, and ASCO Answers fact sheets are also available online (www.cancer.net/ascoanswers) and through the online bookstore in packs of 125. ASCO members receive a 20% discount, and all patient education materials ship for free. ■
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