When cancer services are only offered in one or two large cities in a country and when machines and equipment break down regularly, patients must spend long amounts of time away from their families and homes. If they don’t have relatives to stay with in these cities, they must find a place to stay. Many are faced with limited options and resort to sleeping in hospital corridors, on the grounds awaiting treatment, or in other unsecure places.
In addition to securing lodging, patients are often overwhelmed by costs related to transportation to get to and from the large cities and to and from treatment services on a consistent basis and may delay or abandon a treatment plan as a result. And for many patients seeking cancer treatment, it may be the first time they’ve ever entered a hospital and their treatment will require them to interact with many different wards and personnel in the process. Many in this large and unfamiliar setting get lost in or delayed by the process, which causes high levels of stress and can negatively impact patient outcomes.
Building off of our organizational expertise in implementing supportive enabling services to reduce barriers to care, provide in-depth technical support to hospitals and CSOs to design and implement culturally appropriate cancer care and support services (e.g., patient lodging, transportation solutions, and patient navigation services) that enhance referral processes, promote treatment completion, and improve health outcomes.