Life Planning

Working with Your Treatment Team to Set Treatment and Life Goals

For people with metastatic breast cancer (MBC), treatment, life goals and priorities are often very closely aligned. As you work with your doctor to set treatment goals, it is important to ensure that you are positioned to meet these goals through financial, legal and other preparations.

Life Planning Treatment Team

There are several types of health care providers and complementary caregivers who can help navigate life planning. Ask your nurse navigator or oncologist to refer you to a care provider in your community. You can also check with your insurance provider to see if you're able to reach out directly to a care provider, without a referral.

Palliative Care Specialist

Health care provider who works to improve quality of life by relieving the pain, symptoms and stress associated with MBC. Services provided include: psychological and spiritual care, symptom relief and life planning. Palliative care is not the same as hospice. While many think of the 2 specialists as the same, palliative care is something that can begin at diagnosis to help someone have a better quality of life while living with a disease. Hospice may begin when treatment is stopped. Asking to be referred to a palliative care specialist does not mean you're asking to be put into hospice care.

Oncology Social Worker

Counselor who provides emotional support for people living with cancer and helps them access practical assistance. Depending on where you are being treated, a social worker may serve as your care navigator – helping to guide all aspects of your care. They can also connect you to financial and legal advisors in your community.


Health care provider who acts as the first line of communication for MBC treatment, and helps to manage treatment administration, symptoms, side effects and oncology team communication.


Health care provider who can help you manage the emotional changes associated with MBC.

Oncology Nurse Navigator

Nurse who can provide assistance navigating the treatment landscape to access care and clinical trial participation opportunities.


Care that takes place in a person’s home as they are approaching end of life. Hospice provides support to address a person’s physical, emotional and spiritual needs.

Visit these pages to learn more:
  • Physical
  • Emotional &
    Spiritual Health
  • MBC
    & Relationships
  • Life