A Second Opinion from a Team You Can Trust

When you’re facing a cancer diagnosis, you want answers, a second opinion and clear communication and coordination from medical experts.

That’s the premise behind the Novant Health Multidisciplinary Cancer Clinic, a place that brings all the cancer specialists together to look at a patient’s case, review her records and get her the answers she needs. But even better, the process puts the patient at the center of the discussion, so that she winds up with a personalized treatment plan. That was what breast cancer patient Phyllis Rollins most appreciated about her visit with the Multidisciplinary Cancer Clinic in Charlotte.
Rollins met with a medical oncologist, radiation oncologist, surgical oncologist, dietitian, social worker, nurse navigator and cancer survivor at the Novant Health multidisciplinary clinic.

“Each one of those people spent real time with us,” said Rollins, who lives near Charlotte. “Not just, ‘Oh, we don’t have time to answer your question today, that will be when you come to the office,’ but every question to the extent that we were finally satisfied with our answer.”

People from all 50 states have traveled to the clinic for a second opinion. In addition to providing the collaboration of experts, the clinic connects patients with a wealth of support services and a nurse navigator who can serve as a guide through the process.

Peter Turk, MD, is the medical director of the Novant Health multidisciplinary breast cancer clinic, one of the cancer-specific clinics that are a part of the Multidisciplinary Cancer Clinic. Patients benefit from the clinic, he said, because they meet with many specialists regarding their specific case, leading to greater understanding at the onset of their cancer journey.

“By the time a patient has been diagnosed, they are swamped with information and options,” Turk said. “The multidisciplinary cancer clinic allows the patient a chance to ask questions in a much more relaxed fashion than they otherwise would in a doctor’s office. They are able to get much more information, not just from a surgeon but from a radiation oncologist, a medical oncologist, a dietitian, a genetic counselor and a nurse navigator.”

Physicians also benefit from the multidisciplinary clinic. Turk said the clinic provides the opportunity to meet face-to-face to discuss patients with other specialists, instead of reading other physician’s notes or connecting by phone. “We come together with a better understanding of the best plan tailored for each of our patients,” Turk said.

For Rollins, synchronized care from a group of providers she trusts has made all the difference, she said.
“They were just gracious and generous with their time,” she said. “That compassion and willingness to be present with us in the process as it unfolded were incredibly valuable and continue to be.”

The Novant Health Multidisciplinary Cancer Clinic provides comprehensive plans of care for patients newly diagnosed with breast, prostate, lung or colorectal cancers. Request a consult by visiting NovantHealth.org/secondopinion.