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When you need assistance or advice on cancer-related topics, many organizations will offer their expertise at no charge. The following list includes some of the telephone and e-mail helpline services answered by oncology health professionals, trained counselors, or volunteers. These services offer general medical information; for specific medical questions, you should always talk with your doctor or another member of your health care team.
After Breast Cancer Diagnosis
After Breast Cancer Diagnosis (ABCD) provides free, personalized information and support to people affected by breast cancer—patients, families, and friends—through its One-to-One mentoring breast cancer support service, Breast Cancer Helpline and Resource List, and MORE: Mentor Outreach and Education program. If you have a question or would like to be matched with a mentor, you can either call the toll-free help line or send an email to the address listed above.
American Cancer Society
The American Cancer Society (ACS) is a nationwide, community-based health organization that supports cancer research, education, advocacy, and service. To send a question by e-mail, use the form provided on the “Contact Us” page on www.cancer.org. Questions are answered within four to five business days. If you need immediate information, call the toll-free number (calls are answered 24 hours a day, seven days a week), or contact them via live chat Monday-Friday, 8:00 AM to 6:30 PM CT. Questions are taken in both English and en Español.
American Hospice Foundation
The American Hospice Foundation supports programs that serve the needs of terminally ill and grieving individuals of all ages. You may submit your question through a form on the Foundation's website.
American Institute for Cancer Research
The American Institute for Cancer Research promotes research and education on diet and cancer prevention. When you call the Nutrition Hotline, your question will be taken, and your call will be returned within three business days by a registered dietitian (RD). Calls are answered from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM ET, Monday through Friday. You may also submit your question via e-mail through a form on AICR's website.
American Psychosocial Oncology Society
The mission of American Psychosocial Oncology Society (APOS) is to advance psychosocial care for people with cancer. Call the APOS helpline to get a referral to a local psychiatrist, psychologist, nurse, social worker, or counselor who is skilled in the management of cancer-related distress. Calls are answered by trained counselors who have access to a national directory of community resources. If the counselor cannot identify a resource, a professionally trained staff member will provide counseling via telephone to callers in crisis. Calls are accepted 24 hours a day through a voicemail system and returned within 24 to 48 hours.
American Social Health Association
The National HPV and Cervical Cancer Prevention Resource Center, created by the American Social Health Association, provides information, materials, and referrals to doctors. Health communication specialists answer calls through the Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) Resource Center Hotline from 9:00 AM to 7:00 PM ET, Monday through Friday.
Blood and Marrow Transplant Information Network
The Blood and Marrow Transplant Information Network helps serve the needs of people facing a bone marrow, blood stem cell, or umbilical cord blood transplant by linking them with a survivor or referring them to health insurance support. Calls are answered between 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM CT, Monday through Friday, and emails are usually answered within 48 hours.
CancerCare's mission is to provide free, professional support services to anyone affected by cancer, including people with cancer, caregivers, children, loved ones, and the bereaved. Professional oncology social workers provide information about talking with your doctor, finding financial resources, researching treatment options, coping with side effects, dealing with emotional issues, and talking with children about cancer. Calls are answered from 9:00 AM to 7:00 PM ET, Monday through Thursday, and 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM ET on Friday.
Cancer Hope Network
The Cancer Hope Network provides confidential support via telephone and online to people with cancer and their families. Call between 8:30 AM and 5:30 PM ET, Monday through Friday, to request to be matched with a trained volunteer who has experienced a similar diagnosis. Calls are generally returned within 24 hours. You can also start an online chat session via their website.
Colon Cancer Alliance
The Colon Cancer Alliance (CCA) is a patient advocacy organization dedicated to ending the suffering caused by colorectal cancer. Call the helpline for information on colorectal cancer or to be connected with a colon or rectal cancer survivor or caregiver through the CCA Buddies Program. When you call the toll-free number, your request will be taken, and your call will be returned within 36 hours by a staff member; calls received over the weekend will be returned the following Monday. Calls are answered between 9:30 AM and 4:30 PM ET, Monday through Friday, and information is available in English and en Español.
The Colorectal CareLine is a national service of the Patient Advocate Foundation to provide educational resources, case management assistance, and financial guidance to people with colorectal cancer. Services are available in English and en Español. When you call the toll-free number, your request will be taken, and your call will be returned within 48 hours by a professional case manager. Calls are answered from 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM ET, Monday through Thursday, and 8:30 AM to 4:00 PM ET on Friday.
Gilda Radner Familial Ovarian Cancer Registry
The Gilda Radner Familial Ovarian Cancer Registry, located at Roswell Park Cancer Institute, is an international registry of families with two or more relatives with ovarian cancer. Cancer information specialists are available to answer questions about familial ovarian cancer. Calls are answered from 9:00 AM to 5:30 PM ET, Monday through Friday.
International Myeloma Foundation
The International Myeloma Foundation is working toward prevention of and a cure for multiple myeloma. The IMF hotline, which is answered by National Cancer Institute-trained specialists, provides information and support. Call between 9:00 AM and 4:00 PM PT, Monday through Friday, or send an e-mail to the address listed above.
The LIVESTRONG Foundation provides free cancer support services to help people cope with the financial, emotional, and practical challenges that accompany the disease. The LIVESTRONG Navigation Services program offers counseling services; help with financial, employment or insurance issues; fertility preservation information and assistance; and information about cancer treatment options and new treatments in development. Call the helpline between 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM CT, Monday through Friday, or fill out a form on the website for a response via e-mail. You should receive a response within 48 hours.
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society is a health organization dedicated to funding blood cancer research, education, and patient services. Call the Society's Information Resource Center to speak with an information specialist about blood cancers, including leukemia, lymphoma, and myeloma, or other related questions. Calls are answered from 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM ET, Monday through Friday. You can also chat online with an information specialist from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM ET, Monday through Friday.
Living Beyond Breast Cancer’s Survivors’ Helpline
(888) 753-LBBC (5222)
LBBC’s Survivors’ Helpline is available to any woman affected by breast cancer. Volunteers are not only trained to offer peer support and general information to those in need of assistance but they are also breast cancer survivors. Calls are answered from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM ET, Monday through Friday.
Lung Cancer Alliance
The Lung Cancer Alliance is dedicated to patient support and advocacy for people living with lung cancer and those at risk for the disease. The Lung Cancer Hotline, an information and referral service for people with lung cancer and their caregivers, provides information on screening, diagnosis, symptoms, and treatment options. The staff also refers callers to support groups, medical facilities, and other organizations. Calls are answered from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM ET, Monday through Friday.
The Mautner Project
The Mautner Project, part of the National Lesbian Health Organization, is focused on the health of lesbians, bisexual, and transgender women and their families. Call the helpline for guidance on support services, referrals, or health resources. Calls are answered between 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM ET, Monday through Friday.
National Bone Marrow Transplant Link
The National Bone Marrow Transplant Link connects current or prospective recipients of bone marrow/stem cell transplants and their families with trained volunteers who have had a transplant or are donors or caregivers. Calls are answered from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM ET, Monday through Friday. If you request peer support, a volunteer will return your call within 48 hours.
National Cancer Institute
The National Cancer Institute (NCI) is a component of the National Institutes of Health and is the federal government's principal agency for cancer research and training. Call or have a confidential online text chat to get answers about cancer questions from an NCI information specialist. Questions are taken in both English and en Español. Calls are answered between 8:00 AM and 8:00 PM ET, Monday through Friday. Online chats are available from 8:00 AM to 11:00 PM ET, Monday through Friday.
National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine
The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, part of the National Institutes of Health, can answer questions about complementary and alternative medicine online or by phone. However, their team of health information specialists is unable to provide medical advice or referrals to practitioners.
National Ovarian Cancer Coalition
The National Ovarian Cancer Coalition raises awareness of ovarian cancer and provides education and support for women with ovarian cancer and their families. Calls are answered from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM ET, Monday through Friday.
Pancreatic Cancer Action Network
The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network is a patient advocacy organization for the pancreatic cancer community. Call Patient and Liaison Services (PALS) for disease information, clinical trials searches, or support resources. Calls are answered between 7:00 AM and 5:00 PM PT, Monday through Friday.
Patient Advocate Foundation
The Patient Advocate Foundation serves as a liaison between the patient and their insurer, employer, and/or creditor to resolve issues related to their diagnosis. Call the helpline or use live online chat to speak with a professional case manager from 8:00 AM to 5:30 PM ET, Monday through Friday.
SHARE: Self-help for Women with Breast or Ovarian Cancer
Breast Hotline: 212-382-2211 and 866-891-2392
Hotline en Español: 212-719-4454 (New York City)
Ovarian Hotline: 212-719-1204 and 866-537-4273
SHARE offers survivor-led support to those affected by breast or ovarian cancers. Send an e-mail to the address above, or call the hotline for emotional support, information, and resources. Calls are answered by breast or ovarian cancer survivors 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Susan G. Komen for the Cure
Susan G. Komen for the Cure supports breast cancer research and community-based outreach programs. The Breast Care Helpline provides general information about breast health, facts about disease and treatment options, and information about community resources and support groups. Calls are answered from 9:00 AM to 7:00 PM ET, Monday through Thursday, and from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM ET on Friday.
Us TOO International
Us TOO communicates information to enable people to make informed choices regarding detection and treatment of prostate cancer. Upon request to its Prostate Cancer Education and Support Network, Us TOO will connect a new caller with prostate cancer with a prostate cancer survivor for information and support. Calls are answered between 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM CT, Monday through Friday.