To keep the NFCR community up to date with the best tools of technology, the team has compiled a list of the best apps for cancer patients in 2020.
In 2017, National Foundation for Cancer Research reviewed some of the best cancer apps available for patients and their families. From tracking appointments to monitoring health and finding expert advice, these phone apps proved to be a cancer patient’s best friend. Though three years doesn’t seem all that long, technology can change so much in a short period of time.
The year has been demanding and challenging in many ways, leaving many people across the world in isolation like never before. Prior to this year, apps were an additional resource used for convenience. The pandemic-related isolation has changed apps and remote tools into a necessity, sparking innovation and invention.
BELONG – Beating Cancer Together
Though Belong.Life is a new addition to the list, it is already being used by 250,000 people affected by cancer. Designed to mimic a social media platform, Belong helps people find support groups for all types of cancers and gives users access to leading researchers who can answer any questions a cancer patient or their family members may have. This free app also helps people find clinical trials and allows users to input medical records.
Cancer.Net Mobile continues to be one of the best apps available. This free app is offered by the American Society of Clinical Oncology and is instrumental in helping patients plan and manage care. The app keeps track of symptoms, appointments, medications, questions, and health care providers while providing information on over 120 types of cancer. Cancer.Net is also available in languages other than English.
CareZone is the most popular cancer-related app in 2020. This organizational app helps patients remember treatments, plan care notes, summarize drug administration protocols, deliver medication and doctors’ visit reminders, and simplify treatment through taking and retaining pictures of medications, prescriptions, and supplements. The app also provides a journaling area for tracking appointments and keeping notes to discuss with doctors. In addition to monitoring cancer-related care, CareZone lets you track essential health stats like sleep, blood glucose, weight, and more.
However, the best thing about CareZone is the fact that all of the information in the app can also be accessed on a browser and downloaded when needed.
CaringBridge is another free app created in association with the CaringBridge, a social networking site for people living with chronic medical conditions. CaringBridge allows you to post health updates and any other information you would like to share with family and friends. It is perfect for those times when you get a test result and don’t feel up to calling all of your loved ones to share the news.
There are so many free apps available that it often isn’t worth paying for one. That being said, My Medical can be an extremely useful tool in some situations. The app stores all medical information from allergies and medications to previous surgeries and specialist contact details. It can also warehouse more than one person’s information, making it ideal for couples and families. My Medical contains a section to record lab results, a useful feature often missing from other medical apps.
Mental health is extremely important in caring for one’s overall wellbeing. Moodfit is a free mental health app designed to help users ‘shape up’ their mood. After seeing many apps focus on helping people get into physical shape, the designers of Moodfit crafted this app to help people get into mental shape. The app provides a questionnaire to determine the severity of symptoms, as well as many articles and audio files designed to help people understand what they’re experiencing. Users can track their mood over time and gain insight into which type of things affect their feelings. There’s also a cognitive behavioral therapy portion of the app which can teach people how to dispute overly negative thoughts.
No matter what your diagnosis, level of understanding or internet savviness, there’s an app that can help you. It’s important to remember that these tools are not meant in any way to replace a doctor or specialist, but they can bring relief, organization and help connect to resources and people who wish to provide support to cancer patients. See your online app store and consult with your doctor or oncology social worker for further or more specific guidance on those apps which might best benefit you.
Additional Reads You May Enjoy:
Resources and Support for Family Caregivers
Leading the Development of New Cancer Technologies: Dr. Paul Abrams’ Story
Clinical Trials 101 with Clinical Trial Facilitator Cynthia Kerr
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