December 2013 VOL 4, NO 6

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Patient Resources

Patient Resources from Bristol-Myers Squibb

Lillie D. Shockney, RN, BS, MAS, ONN-CG 

Side Effects Tracker Tool: This is a working guidebook specific for the drug Ixempra, that provides the various side effects the drug can cause as well as how to potentially manage that side effect. There is also information regarding how to prevent several side effects (eg, use a nail- strengthening fingernail polish to diminish the development of brittle or cracked nails). This tracking guide is part of a larger document that educates patients on how to communicate with their oncology team as well as provides other internet resources for education and support.

Financial Resources: For cancer patients taking the drug Sprycel, this company offers a 7-day pill organizer, as well as a copay assistance brochure and card. This card can start your patient off with a free 30-day supply.

Booklet on: Understanding Your Healthcare Benefits. Probably nothing is more confusing than trying to decipher what a patient owes or will need to anticipate paying for their cancer treatments. This booklet provides information in layman’s terms on how the public and private insurance “works” and, in turn, how to determine what portion of the patient’s medical bills will likely be the patient’s responsibility. It goes into specific detail for patients who are Medicare recipients.

Ixempra Involve Me Program Patient Kit: This kit enables you to enroll a patient into a program that provides educational materials for patients taking this drug. There is also phone support by a nurse when questions arise, and information about other possible resources for support. The company also offers a special fatigue measurement tool that can be useful for the patient to complete and share with her oncology team as a communication piece when coming to her next appointments.

Comfort and Support Kit: Also for patients taking Sprycel, they can receive a very nice small travel-size mesh bag containing various products for skin care that are helpful during treatment. The items are all travel-size so they can easily fit into a pocket or purse. There is also Aveeno oatmeal bath salts for times when skin is particularly irritated and/or itchy.

My Treatment Journal: This journal, which provides personal patient stories as well as places for a patient to record their treatment team, appointment schedule, side effects checklist, and other useful information, including journaling, is specific for patients with advanced melanoma. (The drug referenced in the journal is Yervoy.)

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