Pratt Center Patient & Family Resources

Mercy St. Louis’ cancer team combines specialists who treat specific cancers and a variety of experts who address your needs during treatment and beyond. This team meets regularly to discuss your care in detail and design your personalized treatment plan.

Comprehensive Cancer Program in St. Louis

Discovering that you or a loved one has cancer can be overwhelming and leave you feeling unsure and lost. If you've recently found out you have cancer, our care team is here to support you and your family.

From diagnosis to treatment and beyond, this program is available at no cost to our cancer patients. We strive to provide personalized support to everyone under our care every step of the way. 

Pratt Cancer Support Team

Mercy's cancer care support team is made up of highly trained health care professionals who focus on the well-being and quality of life of each patient. They have years of collective experience walking side-by-side with patients and families throughout their cancer care journey. This team generally consists of: 

  • Oncology nurse navigators
  • Social workers
  • Physical therapists
  • Lymphedema therapists
  • Integrative medicine providers
  • Registered dietitians 

Listen to Our Cancer Support Team in St. Louis

Our nurse navigators work with patients and their families to help coordinate cancer care and support resources. They turn overwhelming or complex information into easy-to-understand guidance patients can use.

Nurse navigators are trained oncology nurse specialists and will become dedicated members of your care team. Their focus is on personalized, patient-centered care. Each nurse navigator will also serve as a resource and information specialist. After assessing patients' individual needs, they will provide:

  • Customized resource information
  • Cancer educational materials
  • Connections with social workers, dietitians, chaplains and integrative medicine, which focuses on a patient’s spiritual and emotional health as well as physical well-being
  • Recommendations for Mercy services such as acupuncture, massage, healing touch and oncology rehabilitation
  • Access to local community resources

Oncology Nurse Navigators:

  • GI cancers: Katie Manaois
  • GU cancers: Alicia Smith
  • GYN cancers: Shannon Vohsen
  • Lung cancer: Dawn Campbell
  • All other cancers: Meghan Carter

Breast Cancer Nurse Navigators:

  • Erica Bernat
  • Nicole Gurley
  • Marianna Hopkins
  • Amy Mahlin

Before, during and after treatment, patients will have different nutrition concerns to address, such as weight loss or gain. A clinical registered and licensed dietitian is available to help with these concerns.

Dietitian services are free of charge for all David C. Pratt Cancer Center patients at any point during their care. Mercy’s oncology dietitians provide:

  • Guidance on how to maintain and gain weight as needed for radiation and chemotherapy treatments
  • Education on eating healthy for those interested in adjusting their diet before, during or after treatment
  • Weight loss education for patients looking to lose weight following treatment
  • Therapeutic diet education for cancer patients with diabetes, decreased kidney function and difficulty swallowing
  • Diet education for GI-related cancers and related diets, such as a low-fiber diet
  • General information about any nutrition concerns you have before, during and after treatment

Oncology Dietitians:

  • Elizabeth Collins
  • Katie Winzenburger

When someone is diagnosed with cancer, there's a lot of emphasis placed on that person’s physical well-being: treatments and their side effects, office visits and tests. But we know other parts of our patients' lives are affected by cancer, too: self-image, work, family, friendships and daily living.

Oncology social workers understand the complex issues caused by living with a cancer diagnosis. They help patients, families and caregivers face cancer with confidence. They're specially trained to assist with the psychological, social, emotional and spiritual issues people face with a cancer diagnosis.

Social workers are there to assist patients with practical needs, such as finding resources within the hospital and community. They also help with more complex needs, such as adjusting to illness, making difficult decisions and communicating with family members.

Our team of experienced social workers can meet with cancer patients and family members individually or as a group. They're available to provide this free support in-person or virtually. They also run support and education groups while working as a part of the larger oncology care team.

Oncology Social Workers:

  • Kerry Kopas
  • Molly Hilsabeck

Chemotherapy Smart Texting

Receiving chemotherapy is both physically and emotionally taxing. To help relieve some of the mental strain following treatment sessions, Mercy uses AI-driven smart texting to better assess your risk level and take appropriate action as needed. Only patients who are deemed high-risk will get a text message.

Patients who have chosen to participate in the smart texting program have had fewer visits to the ER and fewer unexpected admissions following their chemotherapy treatment.  

Pratt Cancer Center Patient Testimonials