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Asuzu CC and Akin-Odanye EO
The diagnosis of cancer and its treatment have serious multiple impacts on the different domains of the patients’ lives as well as that of their caregivers. It is often challenging for patients to cope effectively with the social, emotional, spiritual and physical impact of the disease without psychosocial support. Psychosocial health services refer to those psychological and social services as well as interventions provided to patients to enable them, their families, and health care providers get the best possible care from the health care system and to manage the psychological, social/cultural and behavioral aspects of illness and its consequences so as to enhance quality of life. These psychosocial services include, but are not limited to distress screening and management through psychological interventions, group and individual counselling, nutritional counselling, psycho-education services, provisions of breast prostheses free of charge or at minimal cost etc. While giving psychosocial services to cancer patients in most of North America and Europe is almost the norm today, much is still left to be done to accomplish this in Nigeria. This paper gives an insight into what has been done so far in Nigeria to ensure that the provision of psychosocial services in oncology setting becomes part of standard care.