Cancer, COVID-19, and Competing Threats to Indigenous Health

Posted July 20th, 2020

The coronavirus disease of 2019 (COVID-19) is reminding us of the deep societal inequities that make certain populations more vulnerable to harm and illness than others. Today, we are seeing this play out as two Indigenous tribal nations, White Mountain Apache and Navajo Nation, lead the United States (U.S.) in COVID-19 cases. Though COVID-19 is […]


Taking Control – Risks vs. Benefits

Posted July 14th, 2020

By Cynthia (Cindy) Chmielewski aka MyelomaTeacher  Living with cancer, especially a blood cancer that affects your immune system, in the era of COVID-19 is very challenging. I am constantly weighing the risks and benefits of all my actions.  I made the choice to go into self-isolation the first week of March.  At that time very little […]


The Doctor Will See You Now…On the Screen

Posted July 2nd, 2020

On March 10, 2020, my workday as a pediatric radiation oncologist felt very normal – I saw patients and discussed complicated cases with my trusted colleagues in friendly meetings and in close quarters. Three days later, my professional world as I knew it came to a halt.  The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) had been working its […]


Weekend in New England

Posted June 30th, 2020

Our group of college friends planned to attend alumni weekend in June. But cancer and COVID changed our plans. Through a series of messages, and phone calls, we heard the news: it is cancer. The cancer diagnosis and treatment planning all happened during COVID. We still wanted to celebrate our friendship, so we planned our […]


Silence Speaks Volumes

Posted June 16th, 2020

Our team will not be silent. For 26 years, our mission at Oncolink has been to support ALL individuals, caregivers and healthcare providers coping with cancer—from addressing cancer risk, through diagnosis, treatment and survivorship. Our content is available and accessible, without charge, to a wide variety of users. As frontline healthcare providers, we have seen […]


Listening to Patient Narratives

Posted June 9th, 2020

In Latin, the word “patient” means “one who suffers,” or “I am suffering.” Even in the literal translation, there’s no beating around the bush when it comes to what it’s like to live with illness. The experience of being a patient often involves significant pain and feelings of vulnerability that isolate and destabilize one’s sense […]


Between the Folds: Being a Paper Folding Volunteer at Penn Medicine

Posted May 28th, 2020

Jongi-jeobgi, the Korean art of paper folding (often called origami), was introduced to me as a child by my mom. She was a watercolor artist at the time, so naturally she attempted to teach me how to sketch. However, she soon realized that I was more interested in folding the paper in front of me […]


Maintaining Connections at a Social Distance

Posted May 21st, 2020

When my quarantine began, I knew I’d be entering a new “normal.” I knew I’d have to leave my University (Penn) and my plans for the final months of junior year behind. I knew it could be months, even a year before I could return, and that life now ran on this virus’s clock. So […]


Our Playlist for Support

Posted April 20th, 2020

I studied classical music, and one quote from Beethoven always stands out to me, “Music can change the world.” It is such a simple statement, yet so powerful. How does music have the ability to know exactly how we feel sometimes before we even know what we feel? The power of music has never ceased […]


Putting Your Pantry to Work 2: One-Pan Dishes, Soups, and Sweets

Posted April 15th, 2020

Americans are facing many challenges at the moment. Just one of these challenges is to keep dining at home both interesting and nutritious day after day using what you already have in the pantry or your freezer. Here are a few reminders: Canned vegetables have received a bad reputation because they are higher in sodium […]