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About the Young and Strong Program

  • Young and Strong participant Joyce White

  • A cancer diagnosis is a life-altering experience for most people, but young adults with breast cancer often face extra challenges specific to their stage of life. As they manage a serious illness they may also be concerned about fertility, raising children, finishing school, managing a career, or building relationships.

    The program, founded in 2005, is the first and only one of its kind in New England. We have guided more than 6,200 young adults on their journeys through and beyond cancer, offering comprehensive care, support, and education tailored specifically for them.

  • Care Team

    Ann Partridge, MD, MPH
    Ann Partridge, MD, MPH

    Ann Partridge, MD, MPH, is the co-founder and director of the Young and Strong Program for Young Adults with Breast Cancer. She is also director of Dana-Farber's Adult Survivorship Program. Dr. Partridge has published her research in several leading journals, and she lectures nationally and internationally on young adults with breast cancer and cancer survivorship. She has received several awards and grants including a Champions in Change designation from the White House, an American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Improving Cancer Care Grant, LIVESTRONG Foundation Award, and Tracy Starr Breast Cancer Research Fund Award. She also serves as a Susan G. Komen for the Cure Scholar and a Breast Cancer Research Foundation funded investigator.

    The program staff includes world-renowned breast cancer experts who understand the concerns of young adults. They partner with patients to help them make informed decisions about their care. They also conduct innovative research on the biology of breast cancer in young adults, the value of support programs, the safety of pregnancy during and following cancer treatment, and other topics.

    Learn more about our work to better understand breast cancer in young adults.

    Supporting You at Every Step of the Way

    The care team also includes dedicated nurses, social workers, and two program coordinators who onboard each new patient to the Young and Strong Program. One of our program coordinators will meet with you at your first clinical appointment. She will explain the many resources and services available to you during and after your cancer treatment, including genetic counseling, fertility services, integrative medicine (including acupuncture, reiki, and massage), nutrition consults, support groups and one-on-one peer mentors, social work and counseling services, educational events, and much more.

    Our program coordinators can help answer questions about your care and help connect you with resources at Dana-Farber and in your community. They are available throughout your care at Dana-Farber.

    Clinical social workers are an integral part of the care team. You will be offered an individual consultation with a clinical social worker to help you address the emotional needs and practical concerns you may have as a patient. You can decide if you want to meet with a social worker and whether the consultation is just one time or an ongoing series. Even if you initially decline to meet with a social worker, you can always request a meeting at any time. Social workers can also meet with your family members at your request.

  • new patient coordinators

    Becoming a Patient

    As a new Dana-Farber patient, find answers to questions about your first visit: what to bring, how to find us, where to park, and how to prepare.

    cover supportive resources brochure

    Support Services and Amenities

    We offer a wide range of services, from financial planning to creative arts to spiritual counsel, to support our patients through their cancer experiences.

    healthy smoothies

    Eating Well During Cancer Video Series

    This video series and resource toolkit features Dana-Farber nutrition specialist Stacy Kennedy, MPH, RD, CSO, LDN, and explores how diet can help support your health and wellbeing during and after cancer treatment.

    Huma Q. Rana, MD

    Breast and Ovarian Cancer Genetics and Prevention Program

    If you or your doctor thinks you are at high risk of developing breast or ovarian cancer, the Cancer Genetics and Prevention Program, led by Judy Garber, MD, MPH, will create a personalized program to estimate your risk, and work with you and your clinical team to lower your risk as much as possible.

    Join Cancer Connect

    Join Our Online Cancer Community

    Join Dana-Farber's online cancer community and connect with other patients and survivors for support and information.

    Judy Garber, MD, MPH

    The Latest in Genetics and Women’s Cancers

    In this Cancer Conversations podcast episode, Judy Garber, MD, MPH, discusses the latest in genetic research, including hereditary risks, genetic testing, and treatment options.