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Your Journey with Us

Many of us have experienced the cancer journey, either personally or by way of a loved one.

It is not an easy road to travel without the support and guidance of your health-care provider. 

About your visit

At BC Cancer – Surrey, while the main focus is on treating cancer, we also offer a wide variety of support services and education sessions to help you and your loved ones cope during this difficult time. 

Patients are provided with information at every step of the way, right from referral till discharge, to make them knowledgeable about their diagnosis and symptoms and how to deal with lifestyle changes.

Need to contact us?

Find common numbers on our patient telephone reference list

Coping with cancer

The effects of dealing with cancer can present unique challenges to your body, mind, relationships and lifestyle. Coping with Cancer section has helpful information to assist you in your daily life.

Before your first visit

We understand how overwhelming your first visit can be and our experienced team of staff and volunteers will endeavour to answer all your questions and concerns. 

Before your first visit, one of our staff will call you to get some general information. 

This phone call will cover:

  • General personal information       
  • The names of physicians who are treating you now       
  • Whether you need any interpretation help or someone to drive you to your appointment

On average, your appointment will be about two weeks after we are contacted by your physician.

Before your first visit

  • You can call our counsellors or nurses for support and information.     
  • Read the Guidebook for Patients.
  • Ask a family member or friend to come with you to your appointment.       
  • Write down the questions you want to ask our staff. Or you can ask the person coming with you to your first appointment to help you remember your questions.     
  • Visit our Cancer Information Centre or check out other sources of information about cancer.
  • Browse our Frequently Asked Questions page for information on BC Cancer – Surrey location, transportation, parking, etc.
  • Review the Patient Reported Information and Symptom Management (PRISM) form that you will be asked to complete when you arrive for your first appointment. If you wish, you may print the PRISM form and complete it at your leisure before you come to BC Cancer – Surrey.
  • If you will be receiving radiation therapy, watch this radiation therapy patient video
During your first visit

Your first visit is for consultation and planning. You will meet some members of your team of health-care professionals. They will learn about you and, together with you, make plans for your care. It is very unlikely you will receive any treatment on your first visit. At the end of your first visit, you will likely have some plans in place, either for further testing, treatment or other follow-up.

What to bring

Please bring:

  • your BC Care Card
  • a list of all current medications (this includes painkillers, vitamins, herbal remedies, etc)
  • a list of questions to ask at your consultation (it is a good idea to bring a pen and notepad to record appointment dates, information, answers, etc)
  • a friend or relative
  • reading glasses, if you use them, as there will be forms to fill and information to read
Staff talking to patients

When you arrive

You will be greeted by a unit clerk at the reception desk. They will hand you a new patient brochure, which contains important information about BC Cancer – Surrey, services and contact information. They will also give you the Patient Reported Information and Symptom Management (PRISM) form  which will take around 15 to 30 minutes to fill in. If you have  notcompleted the form in advance of your visit, you will not need to complete it a second time. Just advise the the unit clerk that your form is completed (please however, collect the new patient brochure). You will then be directed to one of the clinics for your appointment with your oncologist. 

A physical examination will be conducted by a cancer specialist and this will be an opportunity to talk to the specialist and your nurse. It would be helpful if you write down and bring your questions with you. Altogether, your first visit will last about 2½ hours.

Having a family member or friend come with you is a great way to help you remember what was said.

You will be provided with an appointment card before you leave. This will include your primary oncologist's phone number, as well as the number to call to change appointments. It will also be the place where any upcoming appointments are recorded. You should carry this card with you whenever you return to BC Cancer – Surrey. If you phone in, you will be asked for your chart number; having this number available speeds up your service.

Please note

  • BC Cancer – Surrey is a non-smoking facility
  • please do not wear scented products
  • all cell phones may be left on but on vibrate mode only
  • refer to our frequently asked questions for additional information including how to get to BC Cancer – Surrey, where to eat, where to stay, etc.

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