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Melanoma Care at Stanford Health Care

1Getting Started In Your Care

2Getting Your Diagnosis

3Planning Your Treatment

4Undergoing Treatment & Follow-Up

Understanding Melanoma

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Your Doctors

Extended Care Team

Advanced practice provider (APP)
Nurse coordinator (RN) or multidisciplinary care coordinator (MCC)
Clinical administrative assistant (CAA)
Other doctors on your care team
Attending physician
Medical student
From Patients
How can I deal with my anxiety and fear? How can I cope?

Call Cancer Care Services at 650-498-6000 to speak with us about how we can support you and your family members. Cancer Care Services is Stanford’s system of services that support physical, mental, and emotional healing and well-being.

We can help you identify professional therapists, services, and resources that are personalized to the needs of you and your family. Many of these services are free for Stanford patients and families.

Can my family member or friend attend my appointment?
Can I record my discussion with my doctor during my appointment?
My children are having a hard time coping with my diagnosis. How can I help them?

The decision about whether and how much to share with your children is personal. Call Cancer Care Services at 650-498-6000 to learn about the support available for your family members.

We can help you decide on an approach for involving your family that is right for you. In addition to our services at Stanford, some of our patients and families have recommended other websites for children and teens with parents who have cancer:

What is an advance health care directive? Where do I get one?

An advance health care directive is a legal document you can complete. It specifies the kind of care and treatments you want (or don’t want) if you become seriously ill and can’t make such decisions yourself.

In California, an advance health care directive allows you to designate an agent, or someone you trust to make health care decisions on your behalf. You can also list your health care instructions. You can ask your doctor, nurse, social worker, or other health care provider for more information.

At Stanford, advance health care directive forms are available in the hospital units and at the clinics. You can also call our Spiritual Care Service at 650-723-5101 to get a form or discuss a directive with one of our spiritual care counselors.

What should I expect after treatment?

Our Cancer Survivorship Program will help you adjust and cope with your new lifestyle after treatment for cancer. You’ll speak with Advance Practice Providers (APPs), survivorship experts who specialize in working with people with cancer and their families.

We help you and your family transition from diagnosis to wellness through a variety of psychosocial services, in addition to medical care. Call 650-498-6000 or visit

Whom can I talk to about my work and job during treatment?

Our social workers can help you plan ways to manage your job during cancer care. Call Cancer Care Services at 650-498-6000 to speak with us about your work-related concerns. We can help you with completing disability paperwork, finding financial assistance, and taking a leave of absence from your job during treatment.

From Family Members And Caregivers
How can I offer support during medical appointments or treatment?

You can provide support to a loved one receiving care in many ways. You can help with day-to-day activities such as accompanying them on doctor visits or preparing food, for example. You can also coordinate care and services by phone or email.

For coping, often the best support you can provide is helping your loved one work through feelings. Talk with your loved one, listen, or just be present. Although you may naturally feel inclined to put your own feelings and needs aside, it’s important to take care of yourself as well. Call Cancer Care Services at 650-498-6000 to speak with someone about seeking support for your loved one and yourself.

How do I balance the needs of the patient with my own needs?
I’m exhausted. Whom can I talk to about my feelings?

Remember that you are not alone – you can find support among other caregivers. We offer workshops, support groups, and other programs for people who have cancer and their caregivers. Talk with your care team or call Cancer Care Services at 650-498-6000 for more details about our cancer supportive care programs at Palo Alto and South Bay.

How do I tell my family and friends about the diagnosis? How do I answer all the questions people ask me?
What are the side effects of treatment? How do I help manage these side effects?
What hotels are near Stanford if I need to stay overnight?

Your social worker can provide you the most current information on housing and hotels near Stanford’s clinics and hospitals. Call Cancer Care Services at 650-498-6000 or visit   Where to Stay”.

How can I learn more about my loved one’s condition?

Find answers to your questions about cancer at the Stanford Health Library, with help from professional medical librarians and trained volunteers. We offer free science-based information to help answer your medical questions.

You can access journal articles, books, e-books, databases, and videos to learn more about medical conditions and treatment options at the library. We also provide information on related issues such as coping, caregiving, pain management, and eating. Request a comprehensive literature search on the latest research to answer your specific questions. Stop in, call, or email your questions.

  • Cancer Center, Palo Alto: First floor near the café, 650-736-1960
How can I speak to someone about paying for treatment?

Meet with one of our financial counselors to determine the best approach to paying for your health care. Call 844-498-2900, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Our financial counselors will work with you to:

  • Understand your health insurance coverage and benefits
  • Estimate your out-of-pocket costs for your care at Stanford
  • Connect you with as many resources as possible to help pay for your care
  • Answer your questions about billing and financial assistance, including helping you complete financial applications
  • Find places to stay near Stanford
How can I apply for financial assistance?

Stanford Health Care offers a variety of financial assistance options for uninsured or underinsured patients. Some options require an application, while others do not:

No application is necessary for:

  • Discounts for people who are uninsured (some services may be excluded)
  • No-interest payment plans (balances typically to be paid within 6 months)

You must submit a completed financial assistance application and proof of income for:

  • Financial need discounts at a rate comparable to our government payers (some services may be excluded)
  • Full financial assistance for 100 percent of the patient portion of treatment costs (some services may be excluded)
  •  Extended no-interest payment plans for patients who qualify for financial need discounts

You can obtain a financial assistance application form:

For confidential help with your health care questions, contact the Stanford Health Library. Professional medical librarians and trained volunteers can help you access journals, books, e-books, databases, and videos to learn more about medical conditions, treatment options, and related issues.

  • 875 Blake Wilbur, Palo Alto: 1st floor near the cafe, 650-736-1960
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What is magnet recognition?
What is our connection to the National Cancer Institute?