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By Kathleen McLean

MSW on 01/30/2018

Online & In-Person Support Groups for Patients and Caregivers

Cancer can be a lonely experience. Even patients with supportive family and friends sometimes find themselves feeling isolated as they go through treatment, or when adjusting to their new normal after treatment has ended. Caregivers can also feel alone and overwhelmed. Sometimes, patients and their loved ones just need to talk to someone who is going through something similar.

Support groups can be a great source of that comfort and community as a patient and their loved ones navigate a cancer diagnosis and treatment. They help to provide space for people connect with others who understand where they are coming from and share experiences, resources, coping strategies, and emotional support.

At Ackerman Cancer Center, we offer a variety of in-person support groups for patients and caregivers. Please visit our Patient Support Page to find out about in-person support programs at Ackerman Cancer Center and other locations throughout Northeast Florida.

Unfortunately, cancer symptoms, treatment side effects, schedules, locations, and any number of other challenges can make it difficult for some patients and their caregivers to access the valuable support that groups can offer. In such cases, online support groups or forums can help to provide similar benefits from the convenience of a phone or computer.

Like in-person groups, these can take many forms (with a moderator vs. without, private vs. public, for a certain period vs. ongoing). The variety can be overwhelming, but for those seeking support, it means that there are many opportunities to find a format that suits their needs. A quick search for online cancer support groups can yield millions of results. Some resources, like American Cancer Society and Cancer Care, offer telephone and online groups for a wide array of diagnoses and circumstances. Disease-specific organizations also frequently offer groups through their websites, and less formal communities are common on large networking sites and social media.

If you need assistance finding group options, your Ackerman Cancer Center Social Workers are available to offer additional information on resources, or to speak with you about Ackerman Cancer Center's monthly in-person groups. For upcoming dates, please click here or see the bottom of our bi-monthly newsletter!

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