I’ve been with ChristianaCare going on 19 years and with the Breast Center about 15 years. I was working in Radiology, and an opportunity became available here for a tech assistant position. Over time I was promoted to different positions and then became the operations manager. So I’ve kind of grown up in the Breast Center.

Shannon Hostetter, B.S., Breast Center Operations Manager

Helen F. Graham Cancer Center & Research Institute

Mom to a 7-year-old basketball and soccer player. Played clarinet in the high school marching band.

Handling the fear of ‘Do I have cancer?’

There’s a lot of apprehension, nervousness and anxiety that comes along with coming in to have your mammogram. The results could go one or two ways—waiting a year for another screening or needing additional imaging and possibly a biopsy. I understand those feelings. Everybody’s struggling and has their own battles and personal things going on. I try not to take anything personally and it makes the situation go 100% better.

I often remind staff in our huddles that there’s a lot of good that we do on a daily basis. We see a wide range of patients, from adolescents to geriatric patients. We have developed workflow processes to make the appointment easier for our patients. We can contact their doctor’s office so they can stay on site to have a breast biopsy done the same day as their mammogram. That goes a long way for our patients: They’re going to that next step without having to leave and wonder when they’re going to be scheduled for their biopsy. We’re putting them one step closer to their answer.

Hard work, and laughter too

My staff often tease me that I have a revolving door to my office because so many people come in. It makes me feel good that they can come to me and ask questions and I can get them an answer or direct them to somebody who would better answer it. Usually, it’s about work, but we also ask about each other’s lives and even laugh. I think they appreciate that.

I just love, love working here. It does take a lot of energy, and I don’t know where it always comes from. But at the end of the day, knowing that we were able to help patients is what’s most important to me.

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