Medical Outreach

The Medical Outreach team tours the nation’s best hospitals and cancer centers to build relationships and learn about the latest treatment advances from top mesothelioma doctors and researchers. Our outreach efforts helped us develop our Doctor Match program, which connects patients to doctors and cancer centers that specialize in mesothelioma treatment.

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We are a team of Patient Advocates who help people with mesothelioma access excellent cancer care and support resources. Partnering with our Medical Outreach program drives more patients to mesothelioma centers and increases exposure of mesothelioma experts.

Newly diagnosed mesothelioma patients are unsure of where to turn for specialized medical care, financial aid and emotional support. Our goal is to guide them every step of the way, answer every question and help them overcome every hurdle.

Our team is focused on the medical side of mesothelioma. We are patient-focused and do our best to ensure each patient receives the best health care possible.

We do this by promoting expert surgical oncologists, thoracic surgeons, medical oncologists, radiation oncologists and the cancer centers that offer specialized mesothelioma care.

How the Program Works

Medical Outreach Director Missy Miller and Medical Outreach Liaison Jose Ortiz find the best mesothelioma treatment centers and top doctors through research and our long-standing connections in the mesothelioma community.

We stay updated on the leading mesothelioma treatments and attend symposiums and conferences such as the annual meetings of the International Mesothelioma Interest Group, American Society of Clinical Oncology, International Symposium on Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma and American Thoracic Society.

We have an expansive network of relationships with the top mesothelioma surgeons and oncologists in the nation. We learn about new doctors, advancements and relocations mostly through their peers and colleagues. Asbestos.com features detailed profiles on these doctors and the cancer centers that specialize in mesothelioma treatment.

Our connections run throughout the entire country with strong relationships in:

  • Tampa and Miami, Florida
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • Chicago, Illinois
  • Seattle, Washington
  • Los Angeles, California
  • Houston, Texas
  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Dallas, Texas
  • New Orleans, Louisiana
  • New York, New York

In an effort to give patients more options, we are always open to meeting physicians who may not be featured on Asbestos.com and learning about their program and increasing their exposure.

We also strive to bring resources and support services or help with unmet needs at each mesothelioma program. Our Medical Outreach team connects patients with transportation services, travel plans, financial assistance and support groups.

How Our Medical Outreach Team Benefits Mesothelioma Patients

Our program is patient-driven, and every service we offer is provided free of charge. We aim to help patients navigate each phase of their cancer journey.

  1. Step 1: It starts with ensuring patients have an accurate diagnosis and finding them the right treatment.
  2. Step 2: We match patients with doctors based upon their diagnosis and location.
  3. Step 3: If patients are willing to travel, we help them with travel plans, accessing transportation and securing lodging. Our tours of hospitals allow us to know the cancer center inside and out so we can guide patients to the right place to reduce their stress.
  4. Step 4: We also form relationships with nursing staff, coordinators, social workers, therapists, patient navigators and chaplains to make sure patients take full advantage of the resources available.
  5. Step 5: We learn about local resources, such as support groups and cancer organizations, and connect patients to services inside and outside the hospital to promote a holistic approach to cancer care.

In addition to booking appointments for patients, we also offer the following assistance and resources:

  • Connecting patients with financial assistance, such as grants, Social Security and VA benefits, to pay for health care costs.

  • Helping patients navigate insurance claims and understanding their coverage so that billing won’t be an issue for the patient, doctor or hospital.

  • Informing patients of available clinical trials, helping them understand the eligibility criteria and connecting them with the right location and contacts to join trials.

  • Educating patients about the ins and outs of the hospital and guiding them to the best airports and transportation services to ensure their travel runs smoothly.

  • Answering questions from patients and loved ones seven days a week, providing emotional support and connecting newly diagnosed patients with a mesothelioma mentor — a long-term survivor who offers support in a way no other can.

  • Providing patients with a safe, over-the-phone monthly mesothelioma-specific online support group facilitated by a mental health counselor with more than 20 years of experience in cancer counseling.

We take pride in connecting patients with clinical trials and mesothelioma experts who may be able to help them outlive the average prognosis so they can spend more time with their family and loved ones.

Our ambition is to unite the mesothelioma medical community in ways that help patients access the care they need to live longer and with a higher quality of life.

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Michelle Whitmer, Content Writer at Asbestos.com

Joining the team in February 2008 as a writer and editor, Michelle Whitmer has translated medical jargon into patient-friendly information at Asbestos.com for more than eight years. Michelle is a registered yoga teacher, a member of the Academy of Integrative Health & Medicine, and was quoted by The New York Times on the risks of asbestos exposure.