The mission of the patient navigator program at Houston Methodist Cancer Center is to enhance your care by providing a seamless navigation process from diagnosis to survivorship. We understand that at times you may need some help getting the care and support you need, so our patient navigators are available to:
- Answer general questions about your treatment options, including surgery, radiation and chemotherapy
- Coordinate care with your health care team
- Direct you to health care services for further diagnosis and treatment
- Direct you to local resources and support
Please contact a member of our team at the location where you are receiving treatment:
Claudia Bartos, RN, CCRC, CNBN — Houston Methodist Hospital Patient Navigator
Claudia joined Houston Methodist after more than 20 years as a registered nurse in a variety of roles and settings. This vast experience, combined with her more than 10 years of working with oncology patients, makes her perfect for helping patients at Houston Methodist Cancer Center at Texas Medical Center navigate the cancer-care process, from diagnosis through survivorship. Claudia has a bachelor’s degree in nursing and a certification in patient navigation from the National Consortium of Breast Centers. Call Claudia at 713.441.9379.
Patient Navigator Alice Freed, BS, RN, CBCN — Houston Methodist San Jacinto Hospital
As a certified breast care nurse at Houston Methodist Cancer Center at San Jacinto, Alice works closely with patients to ensure they receive appropriate care. For patients with suspicious diagnostic findings, she facilitates effective coordination and assists with connecting patients to expert doctors within their network. For the newly diagnosed, she provides clarity to the plan of care through education, access to information and supportive services. Alice continues assisting oncology patients throughout their treatment and into survivorship based on their individual needs. Alice is an active member of several professional organizations, including the Academy of Oncology Nurse Navigators, the Houston Chapter of Oncology Nurse Navigators and the Oncology Nursing Society. Call Alice at 281.420.7394.
Patient Navigator Melissa de Los Santos, BSN, RN, OCN — Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital
Melissa is an oncology patient navigator at Houston Methodist Cancer Center at Sugar Land. She has 11 years of experience caring for cancer patients, seven as an oncology nurse. She has a bachelor of science in nursing and is an oncology-certified nurse. As an oncology patient navigator for breast and gynecologic cancers, Melissa focuses on educating patients about their diagnosis, advocating for individuals undergoing cancer treatments, helping patients make timely decisions about treatment, providing assistance with scheduling, and coordinating with the doctors involved. Contact Melissa at 281.276.8989.
Patient Navigator Erica Esprit, BA, RN, CHW — Houston Methodist West Hospital
Erica joined Houston Methodist West Hospital in 2011. She holds a bachelor’s degree in social work and has been a registered nurse for more than 10 years. She has spent her career serving patients and empowering diverse populations through nursing, case management and advocacy, making her ideal for guiding patients at Houston Methodist Cancer Center at West through the often complex cancer-care process. Erica is also a certified community health worker. Call Erica at 832.522.8110.
Patient Navigator Debbie Drury, BS, RN, OCN — Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital
Debbie is an oncology patient navigator at Houston Methodist Cancer Center at Willowbrook who works closely with patients to help them navigate the often overwhelming process from diagnosis to survivorship. Debbie received her nursing degree from Texas Women’s University in Houston, and holds a bachelor’s degree in nursing. She received her training in medical oncology at the Texas Medical Center and is an oncology-certified nurse. Call Debbie at 281.737.1247.
Patient Navigator Naureen Ismail, Bsn, Rn — Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital
Naureen is an oncology patient navigator at Houston Methodist Cancer Center at Willowbrook. She has worked in oncology for most of her career, and enjoys the opportunity to make a true connection with her patients. In addition, Naureen has been active in community outreach, collaborating with the American Cancer Society, Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and the Breast Health Collaborative. She has a bachelor of science in nursing and is currently working on her master’s in health care administration. She is also a recipient of the Susan G. Komen & BMW Ultimate Drive Hero Award. Call Naureen at 713.907.5367.
Patient Navigator Shelly Norris-Pepper, BSN, RN — Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital
Shelly is a diagnostic patient navigator and breast cancer nurse at Houston Methodist Cancer Center at Willowbrook. She enjoys developing what she describes as meaningful and rewarding connections with patients and their families. “I want patients to leave our breast care center knowing they are our top priority and they can call on us anytime.” She has a bachelor of science in nursing and is the recipient of the RN Patient Satisfaction Survey award for outstanding performance from Houston Methodist. Call Shelly at 281.737.1218.