Cancer Survivors, Loved Ones Share How They Advocate

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We recently asked our audience how they advocate for themselves and others in the oncology space. Here’s what they had to say.

When it comes to cancer, it is often expressed that it is important for survivors (and those supporting them) to listen to their bodies and speak up with health care providers. So, in a recent #CUREConnect question on social media, we asked our audience of patients, survivors and caregivers, “how have you advocated for yourself or your loved one during cancer?”

MORE: Expert Offers 3 Ways to Be a Self-Advocate During Cancer Treatment

Here’s what people had to say:

Self-Advocacy

“I pushed my health care provider to authorize outside second opinions from an expert in kidney cancer. I then brought back a recommendation for treatment which was approved by my health care team. After the immunotherapy, I had shrinkage then stable disease for nearly three years.” — Terri L., a kidney cancer survivor

Quote saying: "I've educated myself about my disease, so I know what questions to ask."

Patients, survivors and caregivers to those with cancer shared how they advocate for themselves and their loved ones.

“Advocacy for myself and fellow cancer survivors has taken center stage in my life. It gives me purpose, creating light where darkness reigned and hope where despair once resided.” — Ron Cooper, a prostate cancer survivor and CURE® contributor.

“I’ve educated myself about my disease, so I know what questions to ask.” — Valarie T., a myeloma survivor

“I always question and get a second opinion for treatments.” — Shoba R.

Sharing Stories and Helping Improve Outcomes for Others

“Encouraging people to go for routine screening and for those in treatment, encouraging them to ask questions, bring a support person to help write things down and to express their needs, no matter how big or small. And emphatic, reflective listening.” — Instagram user “Dreamtime_Wellness”

“I was misdiagnosed for 14 years, so I actively tried to advocate for better health care. Now, I do public speaking, (am) constantly sharing info, helping out other patients, having stuff on my car, etc.” — Lauren C., a lung cancer survivor

“I’m a contributor at CURE® and a volunteer at FORCE. I share my late wife’s hereditary cancer story and how her cancer could have been prevented. Yes, there are preventable cancers. I advocate for more awareness of and better screening for hereditary cancer risks. I also advocate for my child, who is a previvor.” — Mark Hicks, a CURE® contributor

Follow CURE® on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to see our weekly #CUREConnect question, and join the conversation.


For more news on cancer updates, research and education, don’t forget to subscribe to CURE®’s newsletters here.

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