June 28, 2012GAINESVILLE, Ga. – Today marks the launch of Northeast Georgia Medical Center’s (NGMC) new cancer rehabilitation program designed to help cancer survivors function at the highest possible level. The collaborative effort of The Cancer Center at NGMC and The Rehabilitation Institute at NGMC make NGMC the first hospital in Georgia to offer STAR Program® certified cancer rehabilitation.
The STAR Program, which stands for Survivorship Training and
Rehabilitation, is the nation’s first certification program to providehospitals with the tools and training needed to minimize the debilitating side effects of cancer treatment. Clinicians who have completed the STAR Program Certification course use their skills to provide treatment tailored to the specific needs of cancer patients who are experiencing:
- Musculoskeletal pain
- Joint stiffness
- Limb swelling (lymphedema)
- General weakness
- Cognitive problems
- Balance issues
- Difficulty talking or swallowing
- Oncology nurses
- Physical therapists
- Occupational therapists
- Speech-language pathologists
- Registered dietician
- Cancer navigator
- Licensed Clinical Social Worker
In addition to providing acute inpatient care at Northeast Georgia Medical Center in Gainesville, STAR Program certified clinicians also provide outpatient cancer rehabilitation services at The Rehabilitation Institute’s satellite locations in Braselton, Cleveland, Dawsonville and Gainesville.
“Cancer and its treatment can result in incredible physical, emotional, occupational, spiritual and financial burdens for patients and their families,” says Frank G. Lake, III, MD, a radiation oncologist with Northeast Georgia Cancer Specialists and STAR Program certified clinician at The Cancer Center at NGMC. “The STAR Program certification helps us offer another layer of support to lessen these burdens during all phases of a patient's cancer journey, and I look forward to referring my patients into the program.”
Most of NGMC’s cancer rehabilitation services are reimbursed by health insurance providers; staff can work with patients to verify insurance benefits for their specific plans. If you think cancer rehabilitation is right for you, ask your physician to refer you to NGMC’s cancer rehabilitation program or call 770-219-8200 for more information.