MEDFORD, Or.- Cancer can be a stressful and scary diagnosis for most people. But Asante Medical Center is working on a cancer treatment center to make the process as easy as possible.
Asante says it’s Regional Cancer Center will provide everything a cancer patient needs in one centralized location.
But the non-profit health system says they can’t do it alone, so it’s turning to the Rogue Valley community for support.
Asante Rogue Regional Medical Center spent last year looking at the entire region’s approach to cancer care. It found, despite great treatment options, it was spread too far apart.
“That care is all over the valley. So someone facing cancer right now has to go to multiple locations. Here for one doctor, there for another, here for one appointment, here for an infusion, there for radiation,” said Christian Gold Stagg. Gold Stagg is the Director of Development for the Asante Foundation, an organization that helps develop health care in the valley.
One of its projects is the Asante Regional Cancer Center which hopes to centralize cancer treatment in one location.
“Having a navigator help you move between the different specialties and different clinicians, as well as the process. Cancer is immediately stressful. Having the word be said in the physician-patient dialogue creates stress, but then how do you react and how to set the course,” explained Rogue Regional Medical Center CEO Mick Zdeblick. He says it’ll make the entire process easier for patients and doctors.
“We bring in some great specialists and clinicians to gather around the patient and giving them a place to work together right with the patient at the middle of that,” Zdeblick said.
Asante is partnering with many clinicians while developing the center. That’s no easy task in a pandemic but Zdeblick says they’ve made it work.
“A lot of 3D imaging and conference calls via WebX to walk through the 3D model and getting reactions from the clinicians… We actually mocked up the infusion bays out of cardboard and brought the clinicians in so they could walk about the space, see the lines of sight,” he explained.
The Asante Foundation set a goal to raise $10 million dollars for the Cancer Center. Its a big goal they say will result in a huge impact.
“This is going to change the lives of so many people that we that we know and love and don’t even know,” Gold Stagg said.
The foundation is hoping the community will help raise what they need for the center.
“All of us know someone, love someone, is someone who has been affected by this illness. And we have an opportunity to change lives. Cancer is hard enough and its going to take the whole community to create this cancer center and create programs that make life easier for people facing this illness,” explained Gold Stagg. They hope to open the center by winter of next year.
Gold Stagg says they’ve raised just under $2 million of their $10 million dollar goal. You can help contribute to the project by going to AsanteFoundation.Org.
Grace Smith is co-anchor for NBC5 News at 6. The Chicago native is a recent graduate of University of Miami with a Communication Honors degree specializing in Broadcast Journalism. She minored in Creative Writing and focused her senior thesis on social media usage and engagement. During her time at the University of Miami, she anchored multiple award-winning student television programs, covering everything from music festivals to the Super Bowl.
Though she loved Miami’s beaches, she’s thrilled to be in the Pacific Northwest where she can experience all four seasons and have a real Christmas tree! When she’s not at work, you can find Grace glued to any television showing live sports (especially if it’s the Chicago Bears) or attempting a new recipe as she learns to cook.