The Iowa Oncology Navigation Network (IONN) is a members-only web forum and directory. Housed within the Iowa Cancer Consortium, IONN is for Iowa professionals who work as patient navigators, oncology social workers, cancer care coordinators, and similar roles to relate peer-to-peer, share resources, ask questions, and make professional connections.
Why is patient navigation important? This Stories from the Iowa Cancer Plan video shows how patient navigation is a crucial piece of care and quality of life.
Learn more about patient navigation in Iowa from the 2022 Iowa Cancer Summit Patient Navigation Panel.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I log in to IONN?
How do I post on the IONN forum?
How do I know when someone has replied to my post or posted something new on the IONN forum?
How do I use the IONN directory?
What is a patient navigator?
From Cancer.gov: A patient navigator helps to guide a patient through the healthcare system. This includes help going through the screening, diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up of a medical condition, such as cancer. No two patients are alike. These services are patient centered and individualized according to the needs of the patient. A patient navigator helps patients communicate with their healthcare providers, so they get the information they need to make decisions about their health care. Patient navigators may also help patients set up appointments for doctor visits and medical tests and get financial, legal, and social support. They may also work with insurance companies, employers, case managers, lawyers, and others who may influence a patient’s healthcare needs.
What are some other names for a patient navigator?
NURSE NAVIGATOR: A clinically trained individual responsible to identify and address barriers to timely and appropriate cancer treatment. They guide the patient through the cancer care continuum from diagnosis through survivorship. More specifically, the nurse navigator acts as a central point of contact for a patient and coordinates all components involved in cancer care including surgical, medical, and radiation oncologists; social workers; patient education; community support; financial and insurance assistance; etc. This person has the clinical background and is a critical member of the multidisciplinary cancer team.
PATIENT OR NON-CLINICALLY LICENSED NAVIGATOR: An individual who does not have or use clinical training to provide individualized assistance to patients and families affected by cancer to improve access to health care services. A patient navigator may work within the health care system at point of screening, diagnosis, treatment or survivorship or across the cancer care spectrum or outside the health care system at a community-based organization or as a freelance patient navigator. The patient navigator is a primary point of contact for the patient and works with other members of the care team to coordinate care for the patient.
COMMUNITY HEALTH WORKER: Community health workers (CHW)s are members of communities who work either in association with the local health care system in both urban and rural environments. CHWs can offer interpretation and translation services, provide culturally appropriate health education and information, assist people in receiving the care they need, give informal counseling and guidance on health behaviors, advocate for individual and community health needs, and provide some direct services such as first aid and blood pressure screening.
I have a resource to share with navigators, but I am not one myself.
That’s great! Iowa Cancer Consortium staff would be happy to pass along your resource to the Iowa Oncology Navigation Network, as well as to our other members as applicable. Please email your resource for our IONN members to [email protected] and ask us to share with the network.
Non-Solicitation Policy for IONN Use
The Iowa Cancer Consortium believes in the meaningful exchange of information resulting in improved coordinated cancer control efforts. This policy guides the use of member data and information for those purposes. Members and partners are always encouraged to reach out to Iowa Cancer Consortium staff at [email protected] to discuss opportunities for coordination and collaboration.
To ensure alignment with our mission, vision, and values:
- The Iowa Cancer Consortium prohibits the use of the Member Directory, member forums, workgroup and/or committee meetings, and other Consortium platforms or communication mechanisms for external commercial purposes, product development, or product marketing/sales. This excludes exhibiting activities at the Iowa Cancer Summit.
- The Iowa Cancer Consortium prohibits sharing of member contact information obtained through a Consortium platform with non-members without the prior approval of the organization or the member in question.
The Iowa Cancer Consortium staff and board members reserve the right to determine whether specific actions violate this policy. Organizations/individuals found to have violated the policy may have their access to Consortium directories, forums, and other platforms rescinded.