Caregivers Tool Kit

Priority Tasks

  1. This is the “Collective Sum” of actual Caregiver Experiences and Knowledge.
  2. Caring for the Caregiver – Please read this note.

The Caregiver

The Navigator: You become the primary Caregiver for your patient, an extra pair of eyes and ears, the cooler head that helps navigate through the avalanche of information and decisions to be made.

The Patient Tool Kit

Make sure that you are very familiar with the “Patient Tool Kit” as it is vital that you complete the Kit’s priorities tasks.

Build an Environment

The Unseen X-factor: You need to form a team environment as quickly as possible. The Patient will very often push back as they grapple with the shock. Initially they become lost and self absorbed – this is normal and does improve.

Physical & Mental

This Works: Most patients will quickly become challenged in both, and need constant reassurance that you are there. Tip… Break everything down into small chunks and begin doing things at a slower pace, one thing at a time, even though it will feel more is being demanded of you. This works!

Accept the Diagnosis

Remain open to Possibilities: Once the Diagnosis is confirmed and agreed upon, then support an environment that is open minded, allowing the patient’s willingness to create (or indulge) in a prognosis with better outcomes. Being realistic is not always a realistic approach.

Create Advocates

Ideally you and your patient will have close family and friends, identify and ask 2 – 3 of them to act as an advocate when necessary. This is vital as it helps retain a robust and healthy environment. Advocates can have different skill and inputs – they are your satellite helpers and advisors that can help build and maintain a plan.

Phone Advocate

It’s Significant: This is one person that you can funnel all information to regarding news and they can also be the single “go to” person for all family, friends and colleagues. Many well meaning supporters inadvertently create a pressure to respond and will just add more stress – a phone advocate solves this.

Keep Records

Document the Journey:  File all records & information from the Surgeons and Oncologists etc. Use phones as recorders, scanners etc. when attending meetings. Also keep a Thoughts Journal – it’s a very healthy outlet. Encourage the Patient to also keep their own journal.

Make Lists

Lists Work: Your mobile phone or notebook is an excellent place to create compartments or chapters for this. Make sure that you familiarise yourself with this before entering the professionals office. Encourage your patient to do the same.

Research

Be Open-Minded:  There are Facebook Groups specifically for caregivers which provide an excellent channel to learn from others caregivers experiences and provide knowledge of treatments, trials and resources in general. Google is a very good resource as you become more familiar with terminologies and phrases.

Ask Questions

Questions Unburden: You and your patient will have many questions, and more successful outcomes will come from those who ask questions, no matter how insignificant they may seem. One question will lead to another, so just begin.

Sharing

Sharing Empowers: Sharing is leverage beyond your individual effort, it builds vital bridges to communicate your experiences and feelings and equally benefit from others . Sharing unburdens, elevates and empowers your environment which in turn empowers your patient and all those who support your efforts.

Financial Assistance

Become less Shy: Assistance is available through concessions and allowances via the hospitals and pharmacies, begin by speaking with your medical team. Government departments and local support agencies are also options. Discuss with your patient current insurance policies they may hold including workplace options.

Time Out

It is Essential: Discuss this with your advocates or a close friend(s). You will need a basic plan for someone else to step in and care for the patient while you have a break, go for walk, have a haircut, meet a friend for coffee, attend a usual class or hobby.

Help

You must Ask: You should not do this alone, begin by discussing this with your Advocates and close friends. Most people are very reluctant to ask or reach out for help, this not a sign of weakness nor a luxury, you must ask or it will impact on not only the patient or yourself but many others.

Wishing You Well
This is a priority “Must Do” task list – a collective of
recommendations made between Patient and Caregivers globally
and a head start when beginning a cancer journey.
We share this important information with sincerity,
to help guide you back to solid ground.
Steve Holmes
Founder

Receive “Tool Kit” Updates
The full Cancer Kit Series

Wishing You Well
This is a priority “Must Do” task list – a collective sum of
experiences and recommendations between Caregivers globally.
A head start when beginning a cancer journey.
We share this important information with sincerity,
to help guide you through an unfamiliar and difficult environment.
Claire & Steve Holmes
Founders

Receive “Tool Kit” Updates
The full Cancer Kit Series

The Connected Patient and Caregiver is a new phenomenon disrupting stale stats & contributing to successful outcomes.

Shared information is current, it empowers, it inspires & it provides clarity where there is none. Shared information galvanises community around the challenge.