Transforming the Cancer Experience

Cancer – the word stops us cold and for good reason.

Cancer changes lives

Each and every week 3,340 Canadians receive the life-altering news they have cancer. Our mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters, children and colleagues will need help and support.

CAPO is empowering health care professionals to transform the cancer experience and improve the quality of life for millions of Canadians living with cancer – from prevention thought treatment, survivorship and in some cases end of life care and bereavement.

About Psychosocial Oncology

While the physical symptoms of cancer are addressed with medical treatment, the emotional impact of the disease and treatment is often overlooked. A diagnosis of cancer impacts the whole person and their whole family – just ask someone who has lived with cancer.

The incidence of cancer related distress in North America ranges from 35% to 45% for cancer patients. Studies found high levels of fatigue (in 49% of all patients), pain (26%), anxiety (24%), and depression (24%), along with significant financial hardship and material challenges in a representative cross section of patients screened for emotional distress.

Along with the vital signs of temperature, respiration, heart rate, blood pressure, and pain, cancer related distress is the sixth vital indicator of a patient’s health and well-being – A vital sign that is often undetected which requires screening, measurement and intervention.

Patients who participate in psychotherapeutic interventions significantly decrease their distress, which increases their ability to cope with the disease and treatment. They also:

  • decreased their average hospital length of stay by 77.9%
  • decreased their hospitalization frequency by 66.7%
  • decreased emergency room visits by 45.3%

Poorly adjusted patients consume 130% more medical services, including 130% more hospital days, than well adjusted patients.

Psychosocial oncology is a specialty in cancer care that is concerned with the whole person focusing on the social, psychological, emotional and spiritual aspects of cancer.

By supporting CAPO you can help ensure that millions of Canadians can access the highest quality of psychosocial care improving their quality of life and helping them back on track.

The Canadian Association of
Psychosocial Oncology (CAPO)

189 Queen Street East, Suite 1
Toronto, ON M5A 1S2
P. 416-968-0207
[email protected]

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The Canadian Association of Psychosocial Oncology • Association Canadienne d'Oncologie Psychosociale
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