Preparing For Your First Visit
Finding a cancer team that meets your expectations and needs is one of the most important aspects of a cancer journey. Mission Hope will exceed those expectations. We can ease some of your anxieties with these tips for becoming our patient.
Make an appointment
- Most new patient appointments at Mission Hope Cancer Center come from referrals from your primary care physician or another cancer specialist. The referring physician will send all of your medical records and needed laboratory and radiologic tests and any pathology slides.
(This is a good time to start collecting your own copy of your medical records as well. You can ask for copies of labs and important tests to keep in a binder for your own purposes. More on record keeping below.)
- Once the office at Mission Hope receives your records they will call you for an appointment.
- You are welcome to call the appropriate office at Mission Hope to check on your appointment and medical records if you are anxious
- If you are self referring to Mission Hope call the appropriate office and get all the information on what records/paperwork they need to schedule your first appointment
- The Nurse Navigators are available to speak to you prior to your appointment to answer questions
If you need to contact a specific department or office, please visit the Contact Us page
Check your insurance coverage
- Most doctors at Mission Hope accept all major health insurance plans. Please always check with your insurance company prior to your visit to get an understanding of your coverage, deductible, out of pocket costs, etc.
- Always bring your insurance card to all appointments
- Keep all copies of medical bills, explanation of benefits (EOB) summary and other financial papers related to your insurance, diagnosis and treatment. Accurate record keeping will help keep you organized
- Be prepared to pay your co-payment at the time of service for each appointment
What to bring
- A trusted family member or friend to help listen and take notes at the appointment
- Notebook and a prepared list of questions
- Valid photo identification
- Current insurance card and co-payment
- Completed paperwork for office
- Updated list of allergies
- Updated list of medication names, dosages and directions
- Pharmacy name and phone number
Please arrive 30 minutes prior to your appointment if you need to complete the paperwork at the office.
Allow plenty of time for your consultation with the doctor. Cancer professionals are very thorough and an initial consultation may require blood work, surgery scheduling or other tests that can keep you in the office for several hours.
Knowledge is power when it comes to your cancer care. Before you leave an office for each visit find out what your next steps are! Do you need a test scheduled, do you need to make a follow up appointment, do you need to stop at the pharmacy, etc.? Always know what comes next in your care.
Write down the name and number of the contact person you should call if you have additional questions.
A personal medical record is a compilation of all of your medical information including diagnostic information with pathology reports, treatments, tests and appointments.Keeping your records can be a huge help when seeing multiple physicians.Being organized helps with unwanted stress.Speak to your nurse navigator about help with record keeping; they have binders available to help with this task.