Laura Hertz, APN
Staff Education:I attended University of Illinois at Chicago for my undergraduate and masters degrees. I am board certified as an Adult-Geriatric Nurse Practitioner through the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) and hold an advanced certification in hospice and palliative care through the Hospice and Palliative Nurses Association (HPNA).
Hobbies / Interests:I am a Master Gardener who loves native plants and houseplants, and I volunteer regularly in several Peoria community gardens. I love to travel solo and with my husband. As an avid reader, I also try to read a book a week!
What medical change has impacted the field of cancer the most since you began practicing medicine?Since I began in oncology, testing for genetic mutations that could aid in identifying individualized treatment options has grown substantially. These targeted treatments often lead to better outcomes.
Why did you choose your field?I wanted to help people navigate what is often one of the scariest experiences in their lives. I do my best to give patients confidence, hope, and to help them maintain dignity. I am passionate about managing symptoms that can come with cancer. Those with cancer deserve a provider that sees them holistically and not as their cancer. This is what I strive for with all of my patients.
Do you have any advice to give patients after they have been diagnosed with cancer?Each person responds to a cancer diagnosis differently; it is normal to experience a range of emotions. It is normal to feel uncertain. If you can, bring a support person to your visits so they can take notes for you. Be aware that there is a lot of information on the internet and not all of it is reliable. American Cancer Society, the National Comprehensive Cancer Network, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and the International Myeloma Foundation are great resources. Every question you are thinking is a question I want to try to answer! Please ask.