See how second opinions changed the course of these patients lives and gave them more options.
"My case involves a family member with a brain tumor and is critical in nature. I was very impressed that the request was quickly put before the tumor board and the appropriate specialists were consulted. The initial opinion received was a little brief and did not answer all of my questions. However; when I asked for clarification on the opinion and when asked for more detail, the staff/specialist involved was again immediately consulted and additional information was provided within hours -- VERY IMPRESSIVE! The cost was minimal especially considering the specialists involved, the service was exceptional -- the peace of mind my family received was priceless."
"I did the online consultation because of the drugs that my doctor was recommending as my next course of treatment. The side effects are quite harsh and I wanted confirmation that this was my next step and to find out if there were other treatment options available to me. I was very pleased with the results of the consultation in that it both confirmed the treatment proposed as well as give me more options."
"I was extremely satisfied with the coordinator. She was very caring and empathetic. A great asset to the program. I was certain that the physician had very thoroughly reviewed the records that were supplied to her. I have since had an appointment with her and was extremely pleased with her exam and explanation of my condition. She is an excellent communicator-something you don't always find in modern medicine. Plus, she offered her availability by phone or e-mail should any additional questions come up. I am sure that I would not have found her had it not been for the Partners-On -Line service. I am much more accepting of my condition and have a more positive outlook, even though it is a degenerative condition."
"The online consult gave me the information I needed to approach my radiation oncologist and ask for another opinion from another medical oncologist. I am currently on my 4th of 5 days of my first round of chemo at Simon Cancer Center in Indianapolis. We are using the same chemo meds suggested by the online consult. Thank you. This has been a wonderful service."
"I am very pleased with the response and I will also recommend this service."
"I consider the medical opinions that we received from Partners Online to have been critical in enabling us to get the best possible local treatment for a very difficult and aggressive cancer. The professional medical opinions seemed to employ solution-finding techniques that were over and above the standard opinion that we got locally. Our co-ordinator was absolutely wonderful in organising to get reports to us in a critically timely manner. I appreciated getting second opinions for the interpretations of scans, even though they did not differ from the original interpretations. The Partners Online report was able to give us some hope when our own doctor had immediately given up and was talking palliative. This gave us the specialised medical information, that we could not possibly obtain ourselves, to look for better treatment options locally. I am so grateful that this Partners Online service exists."
"Your service was wonderful. The staff's follow up and follow thru was far superior than any my family received in any Rhode Island facility. Though the outcome was not good for my father (for whom the 2nd opinion was for), your superb professionalism and attention to detail was in glaring contrast to the care my father received in Rhode Island. Though the outcome may have been the same either way, I believe that if my father had received care from Dana Farber his quality of life would have been better and possibly the outcome."
I would like to give a special thanks to Etienne, Cyrilla from Partners Online Specialty Consultations service who helped me a lot in this process. I really appreciated her kind help in this matter - very important in connection with international second opinion.
This service is a lifesaver. We do not have a sarcoma center in our state. The information provided by Dr. Choy gave me the strength and further support to approach an oncologist in our state to insist on the proper treatments. Thank you!
Your service is an amazing tool for those who are already reeling from a terrible diagnosis. The availability to doctors of the caliber your service provides is a relief to people like myself, suddenly very ill unable to travel and in need of a second opinion!
“Boston saved my life, I will carry it in my heart for the rest of my life,” said Henry Grant, a survivor who utilized Partners Online Specialty Consultations, an international second opinion service that utilizes Partners Healthcare Specialist expertise.
Henry Grant had lived in Belgium for fifty years when he was diagnosed with Horner Syndrome. He had a tumor in the upper right lung which was originally thought to have been tuberculosis. After a surgery, he was told by a specialist in Belgium to get his papers in order because he had four months left to live.
Fortunately, Grant’s colleague had a daughter who worked as a physician at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH). She referred Grant to the Partners Healthcare second opinion program. Grant decided to pursue the second opinion because he believed that “if you get a death sentence, you get a second opinion.” Grant’s primary care doctor in Belgium encouraged him to seek a second opinion at MGH because of the new cancer center that he had read about in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Grant’s medical records were sent electronically from Belgium to Boston. He received his second opinion, and traveled to Boston for treatment. Grant expressed that he would not be here today if it was not for the Partners Healthcare specialists and staff that supported him. Grant stated, “When people care about you that is 50% of the fight”.
Once the chemotherapy treatments were over, Grant’s family took care of him in Belgium. That was over 16 years ago. Today, Grant lives a normal life with his wife in the South of France. “I have a good life due to the second opinion."
“It was a great experience. I know that Dana Farber doctors are the best in the country but was unable to travel to Boston. We feel much better hearing our doctor's diagnosis confirmed.”
"I had gotten two opinions here in New York and they were quite different; one was from Sloan Kettering and the other was from an oncologist at Lenox Hill. I wanted another opinion to help me chose between the various options. The opinion I received from Dr. Kulke had to disagree with at least one of them. However, his opinion was consistent with the information I received from my oncologist from Lenox Hill and helped me to choose what I believe is a better approach for my situation. I am told that my cancer is rare and that makes my choices more complicated. Since most oncologists seem to work primarily from the pathology it made sense to take advantage of the opportunity to consult with an expert at Dana Farber without having to travel there."
"Our local Dr. was adamant about me receiving radiation, but Dr. Chen
argued the point the small intestines was now resting on the bed of
the tumor. Impossible to radiate..... MD Anderson had already said no to
radiation it was not needed but no one would talk with us unless we
made a visit. Therefore this way was less costly and we did not have
to see and meet at MD Anderson for a consultation. This service has
a lot of benefits and Dr. Chen answered all my concerns and question
"I can't tell you how much I appreciate your opinion, time and consideration. Your consults were detailed, direct and comprehensive. I, of course, wanted my mother to come to Dana Farber for her care from the beginning but I am thankful that the on-line consult service is available and easy to use. I think the entire consult service is an outstanding service."
"I am responding for [my stepmother] as she is in Wurzburg, Germany and I am in the U.S. I suggested that she get the second opinion as last year at this time, I received treatment at MGH for breast cancer and felt that the hospitals and physicians in the Northeast are some of the best in the world. I believe that treatment here in the U.S. would be more aggressive than what she is receiving in Germany. In fact, her doctors will not consider giving her Paxitil with her carboplatin chemo. After she finishes with her 6 rounds of carboplatin, I would like her to come to the states in person for a direct consultation to see if there is anything else that can be done for therapy at that time. At this time, she is in an excellent frame of mind and says that she feels fine. She has not experienced any side effects--just a little hair thinning after 3 treatments. She continues to be out and about, walking everyday and doing her regular routine. She is like an "Energizer Bunny"! Thank you for this wonderful service."
"Mary's" employer offered the Partners Online Specialty Consultations as an employee benefit. “I had this second opinion benefit right at my hands so how could I not take advantage of it? I wasn’t so much concerned with having a different outcome with the 2nd opinion. Rather I wanted an outside-looking-in opinion simply to confirm what my son’s local neurologists had already determined- that he would not be an ideal candidate for the brain surgery.” Dr. Daniel Hoch, the Partners-affiliated specialist who offered the opinion, was in agreement with Mary's son’s local physicians. “The service was outstanding and the quality of the opinion was exceptional like the service. I was able to help drive the process along despite being out of the physician-to-physician privy. It meant the world to me to not be completely shutout of the process. I wouldn’t hesitate to use the second online service.”
"Prior to receiving Dr.Demetri's opinion, our son was confined to a hospital bed and unable to move. Since starting the two recommended therapies (6 weeks ago), he has been discharged from hospital and last night he took our car and went out alone to visit his friends."
"I was thrilled with the report from Dr. Demetri- it was a masterpiece. It was so well written and it gave me reassurance by a party that was not involved in everyday treatment. Dr. Demetri recommended a treatment plan that my team is comfortable with and we are implementing it. This service was just what I needed since I couldn't have gotten on a plane after my last round of Chemo and risked the infection."