Fletcher Allen, a Vermont university hospital and medical center, serves all of
Vermont and the northern New York region. Located in Burlington, Fletcher Allen is a regional, academic healthcare center and teaching hospital in alliance with the University of Vermont.
Breast Care Center: What You Need to Know
Breast Care Center at Fletcher Allen
Preparation and During the Visit
Much work is accomplished before a patient has their first visit at the Breast Care Center. As much information as possible is obtained about the person so that their visit can be as meaningful and thorough as possible. This includes obtaining important X-ray films such as mammograms, important laboratory and pathology reports, and doctors office notes.
The purpose of the visit is carefully evaluated ahead of time so that the appropriate doctors and support staff are assigned to initiate care for that person. It takes a lot of time and effort rounding up this information but it is important to make sure that the visits are as complete as possible.
It is important to understand how much stress a patient can be under during the time of his/her visit. The staff and nurses are dedicated to providing a supportive and comforting environment during the visit.
This expert group of people all go to great lengths to insure that the visit is caring, performed with respect for individual needs including privacy, and that it is a clean, safe, and comfortable visit. Last minute details, for example, obtaining reports for outside institutions, are rapidly obtained to facilitate the visit.
The Procedure Room
Surgery may be performed in either the Breast Care Center's procedure rooms or in the Surgery and Outpatient Procedures area on Level 3 of the Ambulatory Care Center. The rooms are supported by dedicated operating room nursing personnel.
Availability of this resource increases the ability of our team of surgeons to offer surgical procedures and in an environment that is designed to minimize the stress associated with such procedures.
The overall plan of the Breast Care Center as a model system of managing patients with breast problems is to create a team of individual care providers. At each step, the special needs of a patient are matched with an appropriate care provider.
The Breast Care Center was one of the first Centers to effectively utilize the important skills provided by Nurse Practitioners that specialize in managing patients with breast problems. They have a wide range of responsibilities that includes the very important role of monitoring patients that have previously been treated for cancer.
It is very clear that patients that have developed one cancer are at risk for developing a second new cancer. This service is provided both for breast cancer patients and for patients with melanoma.
Nurse Case Managers
All patients with breast cancer are assigned a nurse case manager. The case manager is a registered nurse that specializes in the management of patients with breast cancer.
The involvement of the case manager begins even before arrival of a patient with newly diagnosed breast cancer by ensuring that all of the key information is obtained and that consults are arranged with the appropriate doctors.
The case manager helps to coordinate all aspects of care from initial visits through post-operative care. The case manager helps to provide a very real face and a voice to the Breast Care Center by providing open access and communication, education and support.