You may have heard the term “Nurse Navigator” or “Patient Navigator” more recently when discussing your health, imaging procedures, cancer care or other related services. Many hospitals and healthcare organizations are identifying someone to be a patient navigator – and Harrington is no exception.
In short, a patient or nurse navigator is your advocate for care – from the initial consultation right through treatment. Nurse navigators are most commonly found in oncology to help patients through their cancer diagnosis and individualized care plan.
At The Cancer Center at Harrington, our nurse navigator for our breast patients is Maxine Fairbanks, RN.
Maxine will establish early contact with our patients, such as calling the patient and reviewing pre-biopsy instruction and answer any questions regarding the procedure. She also identifies and eliminates barriers to timely diagnosis and treatments.
As a navigator, Maxine assesses clinical, emotional, spiritual, psychosocial, financial and other patient needs. She works closely with a multidisciplinary team to provide improved comprehensive services to patients and will be responsible for monitoring and reporting on outcome measures. If a positive diagnosis of breast cancer is found, she will schedule tests, procedures, appointments, and treatments, as well as initiate and complete the survivorship care plan.
In addition, Maxine participates in multidisciplinary consultations and tumor conferences and refers patients to appropriate clinical trials as well as supportive care services. She also directs patient and families to available community resources and supportive services, serving as a clinical resource with expertise in oncology care management and helping to educate patients and families.
Maxine Fairbanks, RN, works at The Cancer Center at Harrington. She received her breast care certification in 2013.