Gastrointestinal Cancer Wellness & Support
Cancer Rehabilitation Services
The Floyd & Delores Jones Cancer Institute offers a complete range of rehabilitation services to meet the needs of each individual patient. Services include physical medicine, physical therapy, occupational therapy, rehabilitation psychology, speech therapy and vocational rehabilitation. Common problems treated by the cancer rehabilitation team include:
- Loss of strength
- Decreased stamina
- Decreased ability to function
- Anxiety and depression
- Difficulties coping
- Self-image changes
- Speech and swallowing problems
- Work-related issues
Virginia Mason also offers holistic and integrative medicine consultations through the Center for Integrative Medicine. Oncology patients and their loved ones can learn about holistic nutrition, supplements, vitamins, herbs, alternative therapies, mind-body therapies, and stress reduction at any stage of the cancer process. For more information about the Center for Integrative Medicine and cancer, please call (206) 341-1202.
Oncology Clinic Social Work
A diagnosis of cancer, its prolonged treatment and recovery can have a profound impact on a person's life.
The sudden confrontation with such a challenging disease may disrupt one's emotional balance. There may be feeling of uncertainty, questioning of self-image, loss of meaning in life and challenges in relationships with friends and family.
The Floyd & Delores Jones Cancer Institute at Virginia Mason understands that dealing with cancer causes distress and, at times, difficulties coping. Oncology social work services are available to help patients and their loved ones. These services are available at no additional cost as they are considered part of your interdisciplinary team. Our social workers spcialize in oncology and are licensed as LICSW.
Our social workers can help with:
- Emotional support
- Transitions in care and quality of life
- Caregiver concerns and needs
- Support groups
- Coping strategies
- End of life, loss and grief support
- Community resources coordination and referral
- Practical problem-solving
- Short term counseling/therapy
Social work services may be accessed by calling (206) 223-6954.
Palliative care, also known as supportive care, is specialized, family-centered care for patients diagnosed with a serious or life-threatening illness such as cancer. The focus is on quality of life with pain control and symptom relief provided by knowledgeable and experienced caregivers.
The palliative care team at Virginia Mason helps by providing emotional support and answering any questions. In addition to doctors, the team includes nurses, social workers, and financial and spiritual counselors. A patient’s religious or spiritual beliefs are always honored.
Palliative care improves a patient’s quality of life by providing relief of symptoms such as pain, shortness of breath, fatigue, constipation, nausea, loss of appetite and difficulty sleeping. It helps patients gain the strength and confidence they need to continue being actively involved with work or family life. Palliative care can improve a patient’s ability to tolerate medical treatments such as chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy.
Patients may receive palliative care at the same time as treatment meant to cure. It is appropriate for patients at all stages of their illness. Palliative care may begin at the time of diagnosis and continue throughout treatment, surveillance and follow-up care
If you would like more information, please call the Virginia Mason Palliative Care Clinic at (206) 341-0708.
Our non-denominational chaplains are available to provide counseling, compassionate listening, crisis intervention, grief and bereavement resources as well as patient advocacy. If you are interested in speaking with a chaplain, please let your care team know.
Catholic Hospital Ministry provides services for patients in the Catholic Church. These include baptisms, blessings, communion, sacrament of the sick and anointing. You may request Catholic services through the Spiritual Care Department or directly by calling Catholic Hospital Ministry at (206) 382-3492 or call the hospital operator.
Support Groups and Presentations
We coordinate with Cancer Lifeline, a local cancer support program that offers a vast array of supporting and educational programming.
We also work with Harmony Hill to offer two montlhy survivorship groups.