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Comfort Therapy Programs in the Puget Sound

Therapies that provide comfort along with conventional medical care

Comfort therapies, also called “complementary” or “adjunct” therapies, are non-medical, non-invasive approaches to providing comfort that work side by side with conventional medical care. Their use in medical environments is growing and research has shown them to be effective tools for increasing comfort and personal wellness. We are pleased to offer them to clients of the Cancer Center or Ambulatory Treatment Unit, as well as to staff or even family members/friends accompanying patients to their appointments.

How Comfort Therapies Help

Each person experiences unique results from comfort therapies. Comfort therapies have the potential to:

  • Increase relaxation
  • Decrease pain and suffering
  • Help improve sleep
  • Enhance energy and awareness
  • Reduce anxiety and stress
  • Reduce nausea and vomiting
  • Reduce itching
  • Increase a sense of well-being and quality of life
  • Increase comfort

Richard C. Ostenson Cancer Center, Puyallup, WA

Comfort Therapies can be delivered on-site or by appointment in the privacy of your home. Sponsored by Good Samaritan/MultiCare.

Available Comfort Therapies

Four different comfort therapies are available. All of the practitioners are accredited and licensed and have extensive experience including working with medically fragile patients. Currently, the comfort therapy options include:

  • Aromatherapy
  • Massage
  • Music
  • Reiki (also known as healing touch)

How Are Sessions Paid For

Payment for a comfort therapy visit is on a private pay basis, due from the client at the end of the treatment session. Massage is the only comfort therapy sometimes covered by an individuals health insurance program. Any arrangements for billing insurance companies must be made in advance with the massage therapist. Not all massage therapists accept insurance payments. Gift certificates may be purchased at the Resource Center.

How Long Does a Session Last

On-site sessions at the Cancer Center/ATU can be arranged in half hour or one hour increments. In-home visits are a minimum of one hour.

How to Arrange for a Comfort Therapy Session

On-site appointments for massage, Reiki, aromatherapy consultations, and individual music sessions in the treatment room must be scheduled in advance and are coordinated by the staff in the Resource Center on the ground level of the Cancer Center/ATU.

If you would like to schedule any on-site therapy, contact MultiCare/Good Samaritan Cancer Resource Center at (253) 697-4899.

For a private, in-home session of any of the comfort therapies, contact MultiCare/Good Samaritan Hospice at (253) 301-6436.

In addition to the offerings outlined above, aromatherapy can be combined with massage when given in the home. If you are a patient at the Richard C. Ostenson Cancer Center, please discuss your comfort therapy plans with your doctor prior to scheduling an appointment.

Jane T. Russell Cancer Center, St. Anthony Hospital, Gig Harbor

Resource Center

Find informational and educational literature ranging from disease-specific materials to information on community resources and programs.


Cancer Nurse Navigator

Available to help guide and assist you through your cancer journey.  As a registered nurse, she can provide information, education, support, and guidance.  Feel free to contact her via phone, pager, or walk-in visit. Office number: 253-530-2642.



Specializing in cancer patients’ diets; our dietitian is available in the center weekly.  To schedule an individual meeting contact Nancy Steedman, RD at 253-426-4428.


Massage Therapy

Licensed Clinical Massage Therapists, Sally Jo Wyatt, Julene Nikolac, and Mickey Willman are available for appointments Monday-Friday.  They are Oncology Massage Certified and can bill your insurance when applicable.  To schedule an appointment, call 360-710-3299.


Acupuncture Services

Acupuncture is a time-honored treatment that helps treat anxiety, nausea or pain associated with your care. It can also help relieve a variety of other short or long-term ailments. Some insurances accepted. To schedule an appointment with Ho Lim, call 253-632-0555.


Support Groups

  • Freedom from Tobacco – open to anyone who wishes to quit smoking.  Tuesdays; 5:30-6:30pm in the JTRCCC Classroom
  • Knit for Life Cancer Support Group – open to anyone touched by cancer.  Teaches knitting to patients & family.  All supplies and instruction are provided.  Held every Wednesday from 1-3 PM in the JTRCCC Lobby
  • Beautiful Solutions – open to women going through cancer treatment who would like to learn easy, fun and healthy solutions for skin, hair and nails. Free, interactive class with demonstration and product samples. Held the Fourth Monday of each month from 4-6 PM. Register with Becky Kuehn at or 253-405-5810.


Rehabilitation Therapy Services

Physical and occupational therapy is available in the Milgard Medical Pavilion, Monday-Friday. Lymphedema therapy is available three days a week, on Tuesday, Wednesday & Friday.


Art Gig

Weekly art sessions open to cancer patients, survivors, caregivers or anyone undergoing a medical life change. Come find your joy and discover a new way to tolerate daily stresses.  Classes are held every Tuesday from 12- 2:30 PM. Questions? Contact Jamie Dobosz at 253-530-2936.


Harps for Hope

Free harp lessons for cancer patients and caregivers in the lobby of the cancer center from 11:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. every Thursday. No previous experience necessary—all levels are welcome to participate and no Pre-registration is required. Feel free to just drop in and learn something new or brush up on your skills.


Oncology Skin-Care Therapy

Customized skincare to meet the specific needs of cancer patients. By appointment, please call Becky (253) 405-5810.


Wig Salon

The Wig Salon at JTRCCC and is available to all patients undergoing cancer treatments that may be experiencing hair loss. One free wig is available per year. Call Lynn to schedule an appt: (253) 677-3893.



Free yoga classes open to anyone affected by cancer. Takes place on Mondays from 5-6:00 PM in the lobby of the cancer center. Mats are available for use, but if you have your own please feel free to bring it and a blanket. Structured to accommodate the needs of all in attendance.


Spiritual Support

Are you at peace? Are you experiencing spiritual pain? Spiritual pain is pain deep in your soul that is not physical pain.  Our chaplains are here to help with a wide range of needs you might have. Chaplains meet with patients and families from all religious/spiritual backgrounds and with those who aren’t religious. Ask your nurse for a referral or call the St. Anthony Spiritual Care Office at 253-530-2142.

HEALTH ALERT! For the safety of our patients and staff only patients will be allowed into our clinics and everyone MUST wear a mask. See additional information regarding the Coronavirus (COVID-19).


Important COVID 19  Information for patients of Northwest Medical Specialties

November 16, 2020 Update

During these difficult times we are making every effort to keep our patients and staff safe from COVID 19, we appreciate your patience and understanding with the changes you may have seen within our practice.

We strive to protect our patients and staff as much as we possibly can from any exposure on our premises.  NWMS has implemented a system wide policy that does not allow anyone in the building that is not a patient and everyone must wear an NWMS provided mask over their mouth and nose during their time on our premises.  This is to protect our vulnerable patients from the unforeseen possibility of exposure to COVID 19 which can be transmitted through aerosol droplets.  Sadly, we have had patients that have died from the complications of COVID 19, which is both devastating and preventable.

We offer a virtual visit option for family, friends, and companions to participate in the care of our patients through Zoom.  Our staff will assist you with every step of the login process and invite you to participate in real time from your vehicle or designated safe space in our building. Please contact us at 253-428-8700 to set this up.

The following offices are temporarily closed:

If you are experiencing cold or flu symptoms, please make sure to contact us via phone prior to your appointment. You may also contact us for any additional questions by calling our office at (253) 428-8700.

Here are a few additional resources as well:

World Health Organization

Centers for Disease Control