Vulnerable Populations in the Workplace

Topics: Oncology, Cancer, Chemotherapy Pages: 4 (1343 words) Published: February 8, 2012
Vulnerable Population in the Workplace
When diagnosed with breast cancer, “Older women face a range of issues that differs greatly from those of younger women” ("Breast cancer issues for older women," 2011, para. 2). For example, older women often think about how to keep their remaining years more meaningful. Whatever choice for treatment is, when a member of this vulnerable population is diagnosed, there is the strong possibility that she may not have a sufficient support system. This paper will concentrate on the experience of educating staff members of a local oncology office in regards to what support needs to be offered to elderly women who live alone and are diagnosed with breast cancer. Different Age Groups, Different Issues

Many young women typically desire to have the most aggressive treatment available to fight the diagnoses of breast cancer. Chemotherapy and radiation are often sought to prolong the lives of these younger women. However, older women typically want to keep their remaining time more meaningful, avoiding the side-effects from potentially quality-of-life-destructive treatments. Conversely, there are some older women who do desire the strongest therapies accessible. Whatever the choice, if the woman is elderly and lives alone, sufficient support systems need to be in place to enhance the quality of life for the patient. Another matter facing some older women with breast cancer is concern with finances. Already fraught with the potential battle for her life, a woman must enter into the complex arena of expenses and insurance. “Some private insurance companies may not cover the total cost of all necessary treatments” ("Breast cancer issues for older women," 2011, para. 4). Elder breast cancer patients may be worried who will care for them as they undergo treatment and beyond. There can be added anxiety if she is widowed or if her children are not near. In these types of situations, an adequate support system may not be readily...
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