About your personal and extended radiation care team at Astera Radiation Oncology.
The high standard of care at Astera Radiation Oncology comes from the experience and dedication of our extraordinary team of radiation oncologists, oncology nurses, and other radiation-treatment professionals. As a patient, you’ll meet with personal care team members who will be involved with your medical care and extended team members who provide support during your time at Astera Radiation Oncology.
Radiation Oncologist – The specialist responsible for your radiation treatment.
The leader of your Personal Care Team, your radiation oncologist is a specialist in treating cancer with radiation. At Astera Radiation Oncology Center, all our radiation oncologists are board-certified by the American Board of Radiology. Your radiation oncologist is responsible for planning your care and prescribing and supervising your treatment.
You will see your radiation oncologist on your first visit to the center and during the planning stages of your treatment. Once your daily treatments begin, you’ll be scheduled to see your radiation oncologist at least once per week to monitor your progress, including (if possible) response to the treatment as well as treatment side effects.
Radiation Therapist – Specially trained to deliver your treatment.
The member of your Personal Care Team responsible for delivering the daily treatment prescribed by the radiation oncologist, your Astera Radiation Oncology radiation therapist is certified by the American Registry of Radiologic Technology and licensed by the State of New Jersey. They’re trained in operating the technology that delivers radiation therapy and in catering to your needs.
Do not hesitate to notify your radiation therapist if you have any questions or concerns throughout your treatment. They will refer you to the appropriate team member.
Radiation Oncology Nurse – Ensuring personalized, coordinated care.
Also central to your Personal Care Team, our radiation oncology nurses are Registered Nurses who work closely with the radiation oncologist and other staff to coordinate your care. You will have a primary nurse working with you during all phases of your treatment.
Your nurse will provide you with information concerning your treatment and self-care measures to manage potential side effects of radiation therapy. In addition, your nurse will be available for any questions or concerns you may have both during treatment and after completion of your treatment. If necessary, your nurse may refer you to other supportive care resources, such as social workers, counselors, nutritionists and/or support groups.
Medical Physicist – A vital part of your treatment planning.
Vital to your Extended Care Team are our specialists in the measurement and delivery of radiation: medical physicists. At Astera Radiation Oncology, all medical physicists are board-certified by the American Board of Radiology or American Board of Medical Physics. They’re responsible for the overall safety and accuracy of the treatment machines as well as for the treatment-planning computers used to determine the beam arrangements for your treatment.
The medical physicists may be asked to assist the radiation oncologist with additional calculations, measurements or design of special treatment aids. The medical physicist also checks your initial treatment plan and treatment machine and monitors unit calculations. The physicist provides a weekly quality assurance check while you’re being treated to make sure the treatment is delivered accurately.
You may not have much direct interaction with medical physicists, but they are integral members of your treatment team and play a key role in the planning and delivery of your radiation treatments.
Medical Dosimetrist – Key to ensuring the proper dose of radiation.
Also in your Extended Care team is a medical dosimetrist. The dosimetrist is responsible for assisting the radiation oncologist in planning your treatment through the use of computers, computed tomography (CT) scans and other images you may have had previously (or that we may order for you).
At Astera Radiation Oncology Center, all of our dosimetrists are certified by the Medical Dosimetry Certification Board. The medical dosimetrist uses guidelines given by the radiation oncologist for the dose to be delivered. The goal of the dosimetrist’s work is to design a combination of fields that adequately treats the area of disease while avoiding areas of sensitive normal tissue. Additional responsibilities include calculating radiation dose delivered to the tumor and normal structures and assisting the medical physicist in quality assurance.
Front Desk – Up front and central to your care and patient experience.
Typically your first contact at Astera Radiation Oncology, the front desk staff will also direct calls and greet you and your loved ones each day when you come in for treatment. They’ll coordinate the exchange of records, collect information for evaluating your individual case, schedule consultations and work with insurance companies to ensure records are processed timely.