Register for the HealthTree Coach for AML Program Today!
You have cancer. No one ever expects to hear those words. Other people get cancer, not you. Acute Myeloid Leukemia? What in the world is that? Most individuals who have AML have never heard of it before they were diagnosed. But once diagnosed, they are immediately fllooded with information, questions, and options for treatment. They need to decide quickly and feel pressure to make decisions instantly.
When my husband was diagnosed with blood cancer, he felt like he was trying to “drink from a firehose” as there was so much information coming at him all at once. As we were trying to process the shock of it all, we felt alone, scared and overwhelmed. Relief came in connecting with a friend who had been diagnosed several years earlier. She guided us to diagnostic tests we should ask for and recommended that we see a specialist. We feel that following her advice made a significant impact on his response to treatment and outcomes.
Once my husband’s health stabilized, he would walk around the infusion room during his treatment, to meet other patients. He would offer support, encouragement and share resources that had helped him navigate his care. Not only did this hopefully help those he met, it drastically helped HIM. It was therapeutic for him to meet others, share his story and hear their story.
The HealthTree Foundation would like to share the benefits of connecting with others in our community by introducing a new program called HealthTree Coach for AML. This program allows AML patients or caregivers to give back by coaching other AML patients one-on-one.
Coaches will receive ongoing training on a variety of resources and have access to a knowledge base of information. Training will include online videos, webinars and classes that will be readily available, so it’s easy to find the right answer to every question. Coaches can connect with patients however works for them, by phone, in person, email or video chat.
Coaches are asked to commit to volunteer 8 hours a month for at least one year. For their commitment and service, AML Coaches will receive specialized education, an invitation to an annual summer Summit in Deer Valley, Utah and Coach materials. They will also be rewarded by knowing that they are helping fellow AML friends live longer and better lives.
There is power in connection. A study that included more than one million patients in the Journal of Clinical Oncology highlights the potentially significant impact that social support can have on cancer detection, treatment, and survival.
For the first month of the program, we will be focusing on training new AML Coaches, so if you are looking for a Coach for yourself, please be patient as we ramp up our efforts and introduce this new program. Our initial training will take place throughout March and April 2023. Coaches who join the program after this time period will be able to access the same training materials at their convenience.
Once the initial group of AML Coaches have been trained, you can go to the HealthTree Coach for AML website and find a coach who aligns with your interests.
If you would like to become an AML Coach, visit our website to sign-up. Together we can reach all AML patients and work together to extend everyone's life and improve quality of life.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions!
about the author
Rozalynn is the HealthTree Coach Director and wife of blood cancer patient Richard Hite. Rozalynn is an occupational therapist and mother of three beautiful children.