Austin Hatcher Foundation for Pediatric Cancer 

232 East 11th Street, Suite 100, Chattanooga, TN  37402     

www.hatcherfoundation.org  

phone: 423.243.3471    fax: 423-498-3581 

Psycho-Oncology 

The Psycho-Oncology Division is focused on restoring the emotional, educational and social development of the child and the child's family after a pediatric cancer diagnosis.  Services are tailored to the individual's needs and are offered beginning at diagnosis and provided throughout the child's and family's lifespan at no cost to the families.  

The Psycho-Oncology division integrates the specific needs of the families dealing with the challenges of pediatric cancer with hospital-based and community-based services.  The staff works to provide services that are needed to help the affected child and their families continue to function on a day-to-day basis. 

School Tutoring: (K-12)Tutoring has a long documented history as a reliable method to improve student achievement (Slavin, 1999). Tutoring, as a supplement to classroom teaching, is generally considered the most powerful form of instruction for increasing underachieving students’ reading achievement (Burns, Senesac, & Symington, 2004). The U.S. Department of Education remains committed to tutoring as a remedy for student underachievement and is gathering data from pilot programs in Boston, Chicago, and New York. Our tutors work with students of all ages and abilities, including children with learning disabilities such as ADD and ADHD. We work with young learners to build strong learning foundations early on.

 

Neuro-Cognitive Testing and Remediation: Neurocognitive testing, also known as neuropsychological testing, is a comprehensive evaluation of the patient's brain function, or  cognitive status, by specific neurologic domains, i.e., memory, attention, problem solving, language, visuospatial, processing speed motor, and emotion. Testing is mainly comprised of paper and pencil tasks and/or computerized tasks, done in a one-on-one setting. It is physically non-invasive. As the brain controls specific neurologic domains, cognitive skills are often affected by many different types of brain-related health conditions. Accordingly, it is important for physicians and other health care providers to carefully assess the patient's relationship among brain, thought, behavior and mood. Neurocognitive/neuropsychological testing helps to clarify this picture, especially in the context of one's daily living or development. Baseline evaluation with follow-up are useful in interpreting possible changes in one's functional condition. Neurocognitive or neuropsychological testing is also beneficial in tracking progress for patients undergoing remediation and/or to evaluate how effective  treatment is for them.  Neurocognitive or neuropsychological testing can help in planning educational and vocational programs as well.

 

Difficulties that might indicate the need for an evaluation include:

•    Memory loss

•    Difficulty communicating (getting the right words out and/or understanding others)

•    Attention and concentration problems

•    Difficulty planning and organizing

•    Changes in spatial skills or visual perception

•    Difficulty reading or writing

•    Disturbed thinking or confusion

•    Increased impulsivity 

•    Slowed thinking speed