The Cancer Survivorship Program holds a clinic every Wednesday in the Wood Building on CHOP's Main Campus. We see patients in both the morning and the afternoon. Once you are at least five years from diagnosis and two years from your last cancer therapy, you are able to come to our clinic. Sometimes your treating physician will refer you to the Survivorship Program. You can also ask to be seen if you would like to come to our clinic. Most people are seen on a yearly basis, although some may have more frequent visits if needed.
Before your visit, we review your medical record and provide a concise summary of treatment and any complications, from the day of diagnosis to the present. Using this information, we are able to develop a list of any possible long-term side effects that may occur. Using the Children’s Oncology Group Long-Term Follow-Up Guidelines, our team develops a plan for routine health screening and management of any actual or potential late effects.
At the time of your clinic visit, here is what to expect:
While many survivors have no late effects and are doing well, some may have more complex long-term problems that require careful monitoring by more than one specialist. Our Multidisciplinary Cancer Survivorship Clinic is designed to reduce the amount of time needed for follow-up visits by providing same-day, same-clinic access to physicians and nurse practitioners not only from Oncology but from various Hospital departments. Specialists included in this clinic are: endocrinologists, pulmonologists, cardiologists, nutritionists and psychologists. The Multidisciplinary Clinic is held one Wednesday a month (dates will vary).
Brain tumor survivors have special needs and concerns related to their cancer therapy, some of which can be quite complex. A neuro-oncologist, Dr. Michael Fisher, is part of our team. We partner with him to provide a clinic setting that focuses specifically on the needs of brain tumor survivors. This clinic is held once a month on Wednesday, often as part of the Multidisciplinary Cancer Survivorship Clinic.
Once a survivor becomes an adult, it is important to think about moving care out of the pediatric setting. The thought of getting care outside of The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia can be scary, since this is where you feel that people know you and your cancer history the best. We understand this fear and want to help with your transition. When you are ready, our clinic will work with you to shift your follow-up care to adult-focused care providers. Depending on what kind of cancer you had and the treatment you received, you may be able to have follow-up care with a primary care provider in the community. You may also be seen at the Living Well After Childhood Cancer Program at the University of Pennsylvania's Abramson Cancer Center, a program for young adult survivors of pediatric cancers. A CHOP oncologist and a nationally recognized leader in survivorship care, Dr. Anna T. Meadows, developed Living Well After Cancer and she continues to work closely with this program.