HNHB Regional Series – Deena Klodt


Welcome to the Hamilton Niagara Haldimand Brant Regional Lead Series. Over the last few months we have introduced the Regional Leads who work behind the scenes for the Regional Cancer Program. This month we are featuring Deena Klodt.

What is your regional role?

I am the Indigenous Patient Navigator for the Regional cancer Program. I am housed out of the Juravinski Cancer Center however I see patients at our satellite cancer clinic in Brantford General Hospital and Walkers Family Cancer Centre in St. Catherines.

What is your day job?

I work with Indigenous patients whom have a diagnosis of cancer. I support them through their cancer journey from diagnosis to survivorship or palliation. Navigating the cancer system can be daunting and overwhelming I view myself as a roadmap to the cancer system for my patients. I ensure that the patients I am supporting understand their diagnosis and treatment plan. I ensure communication between patients and clinician and vice versa. A very important part of the work I do with patients is helping them develop and build their own care plan. For some Indigenous patients their care plan may include traditional medicines or ceremony in addition to chemotherapy and or radiation or surgery. Ensuring that each patient is at the center of their care plan.

Cancer screening is important because traditionally as Indigenous people we took care of ourselves. We took care of our bodies, mind and spirit cancer screening is another way we can take care of ourselves. Plus taking care of yourself feels really good, similar to how good it feels after you exercise cancer screening feels the same way you are taking charge of your own wellbeing and it’s very empowering.

What do you do to decompress?

Well I have 3 kids so I don’t have a lot of down time to decompress. With that being said most of my decompressing involves my children and their extracurricular, as a parentWhat’s your favourite go-to meal?: watching your children experience new things or perfecting a hobby is thrilling and renewing for me. However I do carve out sometime throughout the week for myself i.e.; yoga or going for a walk and I’ve become a big consumer of audio books.

What’s your favourite go-to meal?

The go to meal in our house tacos, always a crowd pleaser and it’s the one dish my entire family will always eat without complaints.