For patients with cancer, there are not only emotional and physical consequences, but also an overwhelming – and often unexpected -- financial impact. Even for those with insurance, the cost of cancer care can deplete a family’s resources and strain their ability to cope at an already stressful time.
The Adams County Cancer Patient Help Fund was initiated earlier this year to assist individuals and families in financial crisis, making funds available for everyday expenses such as rent, utilities, groceries, and transportation. A stringent set of guidelines helps trained financial counselors work closely with patients to ensure their most basic needs are met in the best way possible.
The Adams County Cancer Patient Help Fund would not be possible without the generosity of our community. Every dollar used to help cancer patients comes from contributions from individuals and organizations. The fund can play a critical role in a patient’s recovery and your investment helps ease this burden and allow local cancer patients and their families to focus their energies on the important task of healing.
For local patients and their families, the fund can have a significant impact on their lives. Mike Wallet and his wife, Jeannette, have two sons, Matthew, 9, and Michael, 10. The family moved to Gettysburg six years ago to raise their boys in a small, caring, and safe community, one that they have come to love.
Today the Wallett family is facing indescribable sadness. Mike has terminal cancer and is not expected to live longer than six months.
In April 2006 Mike began to experience intense joint pain, tremendous weight loss, and weakness. He was unable to work and lost his job. Jeannette was a full-time student pursuing her nursing degree and caring for the family’s children. A few months later, Mike received word that he had lung cancer and immediately began his treatments.
With no income, the family was in dire need of financial support for fear of losing their home and ability to care for the family. Mike was referred to one of WellSpan Health’s financial counselors for help. The family qualified for assistance with their rent, food, and other living expenses.
“We would not have been able to make it without the support of the Cancer Patient Help Fund,” says Jeannette. “I have been able to stay in school, focus on my husband’s care, and take care of the needs of my boys.”
“We are so thankful for the generosity of all those in the community who support this fund.”
The family is especially grateful that help from the fund has alleviated the stress and anxiety the boys were experiencing -- the fear of not only losing their father, but also losing their home. Now they can make every moment with their dad a special one.
Helping patients like Mike Wallett and his family who are in a financial emergency is just one way our cancer services touch the lives of those in need. WellSpan Health and Gettysburg Hospital are committed to bringing the best in cancer care to those in Adams County and Northern Maryland.
After several years of planning, WellSpan Health will introduce the area’s most progressive, complete system of cancer care in December 2007. WellSpan Health will open the doors of its newest cancer care center at the new WellSpan Adams Medical Center in Gettysburg. Modeled around a patient first philosophy, the new cancer center will bring together the best in comprehensive cancer care, as well as extensive educational resources, financial and nutritional counseling and social services.
One of the unique features of the cancer center will be a healing garden for patients and their caregivers. The private garden will provide a tranquil space for reflection and meditation. The healing garden also offers a special opportunity to support the Adams County Cancer Patient Help Fund. A number of opportunities are available to give help and hope to our patients, from personalized bricks to planters, benches, and flowering trees. Link on the brochure below for details on the many ways your compassion for our neighbors can leave an enduring legacy while supporting the needs of cancer patients in our community.
For more information on the Adams County Cancer Patient Fund and how you can support local cancer patients in need, call Gettysburg Hospital Foundation at 717-337-4175.
– Cancer Patient Help Fund
– Artist Rendering of Healing Garden
– Make a contribution online