Patient navigators support patients through treatment and care. They connect patients to resources, explain the healthcare system and treatment options, and help to guide patients across healthcare settings, such as across providers in large integrated health networks. Registered nurses can serve as navigators by making appointments for patients, explaining their healthcare treatment options, and providing guidance and advice. Social workers can also serve as navigators by helping connect patients to needed social services.
Resources to Learn More
Medical Center Patient Navigation Toolkit
A three-volume toolkit designed to plan and implement a Patient Navigation program. The BMC Toolkit offers case studies, tools, and resources from cancer care navigation that can be applied by program planners, supervisors of navigators, and patient navigators.
Organization(s): Boston Medical Center, Avon Foundation for Women
Cancer Patient Navigation
A toolkit to help health professionals implement a program that provides individualized support, case coordination, and targeted services, with a specific focus on cancer care.
Organization(s): Kansas Cancer Partnership
Colorado Patient Navigator Training
Provides a full curriculum for building patient navigator skills and knowledge, including workshops, online courses, online tutorials, and special topics webinars.
Organization(s): Patient Navigator Training Collaborative
Emerging Field of Patient Navigation: A Golden Opportunity to Improve Healthcare
This issue brief describes the roles of patient navigators, the benefit of patient navigation to patients, and examples of patient navigation efforts in Northeast Ohio.
Organization(s): The Center for Health Affairs
Grantee Patient Navigator Programs
Provides links to detailed descriptions of six patient navigator programs funded through the National Cancer Institute’s Center to Reduce Cancer Health Disparities Patient Navigator Program.
Organization(s): National Cancer Institute of Health
Harold P. Freeman Patient Navigation Institute –
Provides communication, legal, financial navigation, outreach navigation, diagnostic navigation, treatment navigation, and survivorship, rehabilitation, and supportive care navigation resources for patient navigators.
Organization(s): Harold P. Freeman Patient Navigation Institute
Patient Navigation Resources &
Tools for the Multidisciplinary Team
Provides tools for implementing comprehensive patient navigator programs at community cancer centers, including assessment tools, navigator job descriptions, and standard operating procedures (SOPs).
Organization(s): Association of Community Cancer Centers
Your Resource Guide to Patient
A resources guide that provides materials and best practices for implementing a new or refining an existing patient navigation program.
Organization(s): Fox Chase Cancer Center and the Pennsylvania Department of Health