A breast cancer diagnosis is always gut-wrenching. For Brandi Lee Hicks, it was made all the worse by the COVID-19 pandemic, which added a new level of uncertainty to an already stressful time.
“I remember writing all of my many, many appointments into my calendar, and I broke down,” says Hicks. “It was all too overwhelming.”
Shock, fear and overwhelming feelings are common reactions to a breast cancer diagnosis. To help the 15,000 individuals treated at the MUHC each year, the Breast Clinic Wellness Program offers a range of services specially designed to support breast cancer patients. Although the coronavirus complicated many aspects of cancer treatment, Patient Support Coordinator Sophie Blondin made sure that every patient continued to receive the support they need.
Blondin adapted the Wellness Program offerings to online sessions. Now, breast cancer patients have access to nutritionists, exercise kinesiologists, a sex therapist and more via the internet. For patients like Brandi Lee Hicks, these online sessions were actually more convenient, since she lives off island. Thanks to donor generosity and the passion of the Wellness Program’s staff to help others, patients like Brandi are receiving the support they need to overcome this terrible disease.