University of California San Francisco | About UCSF | UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital San Francisco
Search Site | Find a Doctor

Ida & Joseph Friend Cancer Resource Center FAQ

What is the Cancer Resource Center?

The Ida and Joseph Friend Cancer Resource Center provides patients, families, caregivers and others with information about cancer treatments, emotional support and community resources. The center maintains a library of books and other media; provides access to the Web and health databases; and offers a comfortable environment to relax between appointments.

The center, which is part of the UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, sponsors activities such as support groups, exercise and stress reduction classes and workshops and directs people to other UCSF and community resources.

Do I have to be a UCSF patient to use the services of the Cancer Resource Center?

No, our services are open to all cancer patients, regardless of where they receive their care. All cancer patients and their caregivers are welcome. Drop-in classes, such as the meditation class and knitting group, as well as nutrition classes, support groups and medical appointment preparation sessions are open to all.

To attend exercise classes such as yoga, dance and restorative movement, patients must have a signed consent from their doctors.

The only services not available to those who aren't UCSF patients are the individual sessions with our nutritionist, exercise counselor and social worker.

What is the cost for services?

There is no charge for our programs, events or services, unless specified. Donations are always appreciated.

How do I make an appointment with a nutritionist?

UCSF cancer patients can make an appointment with our nutritionist by calling their cancer clinic and asking for a nutrition consultation. Patients who get their care elsewhere are welcome to attend our group seminars on nutrition topics. Call the Cancer Resource Center at (415) 885-3693 for more information about the nutrition seminars.

I don't live in San Francisco Bay Area. Are there any services that I can access remotely?

We have a few services available by phone, such as peer support, medical appointment planning and nutrition counseling for UCSF patients. You can also call the Cancer Resource Center for help in finding online resources and services in your community. Call us at (415) 885-3693 Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Where can I find information about events and activities at the Cancer Resource Center?

The Cancer Resource Center sends a monthly events calendar by email and a hard-copy quarterly calendar of events via the postal system. To subscribe to one or both of these calendars, send an email request to You may also download the quarterly calendar.

Does the Cancer Resource Center offer financial assistance to cancer patients?

The UCSF Cancer Resource Center doesn't offer financial assistance but there are many organizations that do. Many of them, however, have specific eligibility requirements and limited funds to distribute. The following are some organizations that offer assistance with insurance, medications and living expenses. More may be available in your community.