Patient Resources & Support Services

Practitioners from all of the support services work collaboratively with our medical oncology teams to provide the best of care. Emerson Hospital is dedicated to its patients and continues to provide care and support after completion of active treatment through survivorship programs.

Support Groups

If you or a loved one is dealing with cancer, know that you’re not alone. Emerson Hospital offers an array of groups to provide support and connection to others who understand what you’re going through. Click here to learn more about current support groups.

Virtual Breast Cancer Support Group

Offered through The Virginia Thurston Healing Garden Cancer Support, our breast cancer support group is for anyone diagnosed with breast cancer within the past six months. We encourage you to join the group to share your experiences and receive support. Licensed social worker Meredith Hobson facilitates the group and covers a variety of topics, including:

  • Coping through diagnosis and treatment
  • Navigating your care plan
  • Learning to ask for help
  • Managing relationships
  • Increasing coping skills, and more

The breast cancer support group meets twice per month virtually via Zoom on the first and third Tuesday of the month from 5:30-6:30 p.m. There is no cost to join. The group is generously funded by Emerson Health. If you are interested in joining, please contact Meredith Hobson at, or call 978-456-3532.

Metastatic Breast Cancer Support Group

Emerson Hospital hosts "Finding Resilience, Finding Each Other", a monthly drop-in support group for women in treatment for metastatic breast cancer. The group is facilitated by Sharon Arkoff, LICSW. Sharon holds a master's degree in clinical social work with a specialty in health and aging. Her practice goals include support and education after a cancer diagnosis, and helping clients craft a roadmap for negotiating the journey through cancer. For further information on upcoming dates and locations, please contact our oncology patient navigator at 978-287-8173.

Nutrition Wise for Cancer Survivorship

Current nutrition strategies for preventing cancer recurrence are discussed in this informal forum, which is offered for individuals who have completed treatment and are striving for optimal eating habits. This program is free and led by Emerson dietitian Ena Sandler, MS, RD, LDN. Please pre-register by calling 978-287-3462.

  • Where: Donaldson Conference Room, Medical Office Building, 1st floor, Emerson Hospital, Concord, MA
  • When: Certain Wednesday afternoons throughout the year. Please call for upcoming dates.

Patient Resources


Integrative Therapies

Integrative therapies, also known as complementary therapies, can be very effective in addressing nausea, pain and fatigue and in bolstering the immune system. Emerson patients who are interested in combining acupuncture, yoga, Reiki, herbs or other integrative therapies with their cancer treatment are encouraged to speak with their physician, who can make a referral, including to a certified, on-site acupuncturist.

Prepare for Surgery, Heal Faster Workshop

Learn mind/body techniques to reduce anxiety before surgery, use less pain medication, and heal faster. Feeling peaceful strengthens your immune system and creates the biochemistry that enhances healing. Lisa W. MacDonnell presents a 90-minute workshop in person or by phone to help you prepare for surgery. Lisa presents "Peggy Huddleston’s Five Steps to Prepare for Surgery" to:

  • Calm preoperative jitters guided by the relaxation CD or MP3
  • Visualize your recovery by turning worries into healing imagery
  • Surround yourself in the love of family and friends to feel calmer before surgery
  • Use “Healing Statements”, words spoken during surgery that reduce the use of pain medication by 23-50 percent
  • Meet an anesthesiologist at your preoperative meeting or by phone to request use of the “Healing Statements”.

Workshops are offered at two convenient locations or by phone. A family member or friend may accompany you for free. The cost is $150, though financial support is available to offset or remove cost. To schedule a workshop with Lisa at Emerson Hospital, please call (978-287-3777, or at Virginia Thurston Healing Garden, please call 978-456-3532, or email

Virginia Thurston Healing Garden

The Virginia Thurston Healing Garden in Harvard, serves adults living with cancer in Massachusetts. Through onsite and virtual programs, classes, and support groups, the Healing Garden emphasizes the power of community and utilizes evidence-based complementary therapies to promote quality of life. Call 978-456-3532 or visit for more information.

Health & Wellness Classes

The Steinberg Wellness Center for Mind and Body is home to a wide range of classes and programs designed to keep you and your family healthy. There is something for everyone, whether you’re looking to get fit, reduce stress, or gain control of your health naturally. Classes include mindfulness training, yoga, meditation, tai chi, Reiki, qigong, and nutrition, to name a few. To learn more, visit or call 978-287-3777.


In addition, our oncology social workers can meet with you and your family to provide support and assist in matching your needs with the appropriate community resources. Remember: You are not alone. To talk to a social worker, please call Eriko Takai Frank, LICSW, MPH, at 978-287-3428.

Pediatric Intervention Team

Emerson’s Pediatric Intervention Team is available to help families talk to children about cancer in an age-appropriate way. The team will help guide your conversation and provide comfort aids and workbooks to promote understanding and expression. The team consists of a pediatric psychiatric registered nurse, two child life specialists, and a consulting child psychiatrist. For more information, please call 978-287-3422.

Hospital Library

Emerson’s Lund Community Health Library offers information that can help individuals understand and cope with the diagnosis of a medical condition and learn about the latest treatment methods. The Lund Library is located on the third floor of the Medical Office Building at Emerson Hospital in Concord.

Financial Assistance Organizations

  • Jennifer’s Gift of Hope (Maynard, MA): Provides assistance with utilities, gas and grocery gift cards, and light housekeeping.
  • Joe Andruzzi Foundation (New England): Provides assistance with rent/mortgage, utilities, and expenses. Awarded grants up to $800 per calendar year for those who qualify. Patients must be on active treatment and can apply three months following their cancer diagnosis.
  • Ellie Fund (Massachusetts): Provides assistance with child/elder care, meal delivery kits, gas and grocery gift cards, and light housekeeping. Acupuncture and massage available to patients with metastatic disease.

For more information and application assistance, please contact Eriko Takai Frank, LICSW, MPH, our oncology social worker, at 978-287-3428.

Online Patient Resources