(509) 228-1000 WA
(208) 754-3100 ID

What to Expect


Cancer Care Northwest physicians consult with a breast cancer patient at her first appointmentDuring your first appointment at Cancer Care Northwest, you will meet some of the outstanding cancer specialists that will be part of your care team, including your physician, nurse practitioners, licensed therapists, nurses and several other support staff who specialize in oncology.

Your first appointment is an excellent opportunity to ask questions. You and your doctor will cover a lot of general information about your diagnosis and what the next steps are going to be.

Prior to your first appointment, you will receive a packet with information and a questionnaire. Please be sure to bring the completed questionnaire to your first appointment.

Your first appointment may include the following:

  • General physical exam (including height and weight)
  • Lab work
  • Review of previous lab work, x-rays, scans or any other diagnostic testing
  • Overview of medical health, family health and current condition
  • Review of medications, vitamins and supplements
  • Review of patient questionnaire

For your first visit, please plan on spending one to two hours at our offices. It is unlikely that there will be any treatments or invasive procedures at your first appointment.

Preparing for Your First Appointment

Before your appointment, we recommend that you download and complete the forms in the New Patient Kit and:

  • Make a list of questions for your doctor

  • Contact your primary care physician to make certain all of your medical records have been sent to us

  • Obtain a written referral from your primary care physician (PCP) if you are on a managed care plan (HMO). Our office must receive this referral prior to your appointment.

  • Browse the Your Cancer and Treatment section on our website to learn about types of cancer and treatment options

What to Bring

We ask that you please bring the following to your first appointment: 

  • Your completed questionnaire available in the New Patient Kit

  • All of your insurance cards

  • A complete list of your medications, supplements and doses, for safety reasons

  • Some form of Support. You may want to bring someone with you to your appointment. A family member, loved one or friend can provide important emotional comfort. It’s also very beneficial to have another person listening to your doctor’s explanations and instructions.

If you have any questions regarding your referral, please contact your primary care physician, or contact us to speak with a Cancer Care Northwest patient account specialist.

Support Coordinators

One of your first appointments may include a visit with one of our support coordinators. Our Cancer Care Northwest Patient Navigator,  Breast Care Coordinator and Stem Cell Transplant Coordinator are available to:

  • Answer your questions and your family members’ questions
  • Explain what you can expect during treatment and beyond
  • Provide information from our cancer resource center
  • Connect you to helpful community resources

The support coordinators are your advocates. They help coordinate your care throughout your course of treatment, addressing any of issues or concerns that may arise.

Support Services

We understand that a cancer diagnosis can be a devastating experience. But you don’t have to go through it alone. Cancer Care Northwest provides professional counseling services to help you and your family through this challenging time.

We also offer financial counseling to help ease any concerns about the cost of your care. If there is a resource out there, we will find it. Please visit our support service pages to learn more about the many ways we can help you through treatment: