Orange County Breast Cancer Surgeon Launches Patient Answers Website

From The Orange County Register:

Dr. Jay Harness, a breast surgeon at St. Joseph Hospital in Orange, has launched a breast cancer website to answer questions ranging from what to ask an oncologist during a first appointment to recommended exercise programs.

Breast Cancer Answers provides more than 200 YouTube videos of doctors, including Harness, covering a host of topics. The goal isn’t to practice medicine online but rather to help patients prepare for treatment by their own doctors, Harness said. Visitors can also submit questions.

“We think it’s very unique,” Harness said. “We preloaded the site with questions that I’m asked all the time.”

Harness said since the site launched Nov. 30, videos have been viewed more than 1.3 million times. Videos cover everything from an oncologist explaining chemotherapy side effects to a breast cancer survivor giving advice for dealing with insensitive comments. The site is sponsored by Genomic Health, which makes genetic tests for breast cancer. He said his goal is to help empower newly diagnosed patients.

“Most people sort of come in as deer in the headlights and they don’t even know what basic questions to ask,” he said. “It’s designed as a new way of sharing reliable information.”

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