Every person with breast
cancer deserves the best care possible. Finding good health care providers and a
quality hospital helps ensure you get excellent care and may also give you peace
This section provides you with tips to help you find a provider
and medical center. It also describes ways to help make sure you get the best
quality of care.
Quality of care is a
of Medicine defines good quality of care as:
“providing patients with
appropriate services in a technically competent manner, with good communication,
shared decision-making and cultural sensitivity” .
Getting good care means you have the best treatment for your breast
cancer and that your treatment is given with compassion.
One of the best ways to help ensure you'll get good
medical care is to be informed. Learning about breast cancer and your specific
diagnosis and treatment options can help you talk with your health care
providers and share in decision-making.
It’s also important to
understand what makes up good care. In health care research, many methods are
used to measure the quality of care people get from a provider or medical
center. Three of the more common methods are discussed below.
Hospitals and medical centers
should have up-to-date facilities (including well-stocked examining and
operating rooms) and equipment, as well as doctors with appropriate credentials.
However, these basics do not always ensure you will get good care. The
types of treatment offered and how well people do after care are often more
important measures of quality.
measure looks at the quality of care given by health care providers and
hospitals. Providers, in addition to giving good basic care, should follow
current guidelines for the screening, diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer.
Learn more about these
The Joint Commission conducts site visits and audits of
medical centers to check their quality of care. The Joint Commission gives each
center a rating based on performance. To find a hospital that meets safety and
quality standards, visit The
Joint Commission's website or call (630) 792-5800.
Ideally, it would be good to know how
well people do when treated by different health care providers and at different
hospitals. Information such as rates of complications (like infection) after
surgery, survival after breast cancer treatment and quality of life after
treatment would be helpful to know.
This information, however, is rarely
available. It is also difficult to compare these types of data because the
people treated at one hospital may be different from those treated at another
1-877 GO KOMEN(1-877-465-6636)
What gives you strength during treatment?
"I'll do whatever it takes to keep fighting." - Kathleen