Living with Cancer: Home Care Management

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Does a cancer patient have to go to the doctor every day for medication?

Living with Cancer: Home Care Management

Some cancer treatments can be administered at home, if the cancer patient's insurance company will allow it. Contact the health insurance company to see what its procedures are regarding home care cancer management. If the cancer patient is homebound, the insurance company may make an exception and allow certain frequent treatments to be done at home.

Treatments that can be done at home include:

  • Pills
  • Intravenous (IV) chemo
  • IV antibiotics
  • Subcutaneous (sub-Q) injections (shots given under the skin)
  • Intramuscular (IM) injections (shots given into a muscle) What the patient can do
If home treatments include pills, make sure you take the pills as instructed. If you must take pills in the middle of the night, set an alarm. Keep a glass of water and the pills on the nightstand, so you do not have to get up. Research the side effects of certain medication. Some medication may cause nausea if taken on an empty stomach.

If the treatment includes intravenous medications, a home health nurse will come to the patient's home to administer the IV fluids. For Subcutaneous or intramuscular injections, the patient or the patient's caregiver will be shown how to administer these medications. Always be sure to practice good hygiene when using needles and discard used needles properly.

   

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