By Margaret Colarossi
It all started with a simple idea. Our marketing and operations team watched a YouTube video about a local business that was making waves in the field of oncology care. Since we care for a lot of patients with cancer, this really had our attention. The invention was the Chemo Cozy, a fleece jacket that solved the problem of patients needing to remove their outer layers of clothing when receiving IVs, ports, and other oncology treatments. This revolutionary jacket had access points with zippers for every area necessary during their treatment, ensuring that they would stay warm and comfortable throughout the process. It was such a simple idea, but a great one, invented by a cancer patient who truly knew what it was like to go through treatment. This great idea strongly aligned with our goal of putting patients first from the moment they step through our doors to the completion of their scans. When our administrator learned of the AHRA and Toshiba Putting Patients First Program, we knew instantly that we wanted to apply.
At Jefferson Outpatient Imaging, we see hundreds of oncology patients every year who come to be scanned on our PET/CT and mobile PET/CT units. When getting a PET/CT scan, patients are required to fast for at least four hours and sit for an extended period of time in the uptake chair while the medication is fully absorbed into their body. This process, although not very enjoyable, is necessary in a patient’s treatment plan. It dictates how the physician is going to treat their cancer and whether or not the current treatment is working as it should. The Chemo Cozy immediately came to mind as something that could improve our patient experience and make our sickest patients more comfortable. Jefferson Outpatient Imaging applied for the grant, and when we learned that we were accepted, we were thrilled to be able to offer this little bit of extra comfort to our patients.
The program has been a great success on our mobile PET/CT unit. Our technologist, Adrianna, shared a little bit about how patients react when they are given a Chemo Cozy at their appointment:
“Most of our patients are tired, hungry, physically drained from treatments, and emotionally exhausted from bad reports. When they get something from us like the Chemo Cozy, it shows them that we are here to help in any way possible, and we understand the challenges they face when going through a cancer diagnosis. Every patient we offer one to gladly accepts and appreciates our efforts to provide comfort to them.”
We are so thankful that we are able to offer the Chemo Cozy to our patients and make their time with us a little more comfortable.
Margaret Colarossi is the administrator at Jefferson Outpatient Imaging in Philadelphia, PA. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.