Methodist University Hospital, in partnership with The West Clinic, Named LIVESTRONG® Community Impact Project Finalist and Award Recipient

Published On 04/11/2012

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Award to help people affected by cancer

Memphis, Tenn. – April 10, 2012 – Methodist University Hospital, in partnership with The West Clinic, is a LIVESTRONG® Community Impact Project Finalist and award recipient. The project, created by the Lance Armstrong Foundation, the non-profit founded by the cancer survivor and champion cyclist to serve people affected by cancer and empower them to take action, will bring proven cancer support programs to 90 communities across the United States. 

“We are proud to be named as a LIVESTRONG Community Impact Project award recipient,” said Lee Schwartzberg, M.D., FACP, medical director of The West Clinic.  “This Pillars4Life Award will directly impact our ability to support those in our community who are affected by cancer by allowing us to better care for the psycho-social needs of our cancer patients through the availability of virtual support groups.” 

Pillars4Life is a patient/caregiver support program that has been proven to enhance quality of life for cancer patients and allows hospitals and their social workers to more efficiently triage and attend to the psychosocial needs of a much greater number of patients. 

In a pilot study at Duke Comprehensive Cancer Center, patients who experienced the Pillars perceived their quality-of-life as improved across a range of symptoms including distress, despair, helplessness, hopelessness and fatigue. Pillars4Life™ brings patients and caregivers together in Virtual Training Groups (via phone or video conference) where they are guided through a 9-week coping skills training course by a specially trained counselor - all from the comfort of their own home.   

Methodist and The West Clinic will use the awarded funds to enhance quality-of-life for cancer patients by training social workers to more efficiently triage and attend to the psychosocial needs of a much greater number of patients. Nearly, 40% Methodist’s patients travel from outside of the Shelby County to receive services. The Pillars4Life program would allow us to deliver support to these patients without the burden of travel. Through a multi-disciplinary approach, The Methodist Cancer Center focuses on the most important aspect of medicine – the patient. We approach cancer care by paying attention to the psychosocial needs of the patient and their families simultaneously with a treatment plan. We strive to leverage innovative programs to aid in delivering support and hope along with excellent care.                         

“By investing in these bold and innovative cancer support programs, the Lance Armstrong Foundation is providing inspiration and empowerment to area residents so they can band together as a community to face cancer head-on,” said Doug Ulman, Foundation president and CEO.  “We are grateful to each and every person who voted for making their voices heard and improving access to care for those affected by cancer.” 

More than 200 qualified hospitals, cancer centers, university students and community organizations in eight regions across the United States were selected to participate in an online voting campaign. Over a two-week period, more than 450,000 votes were cast.   

Pillars4Life is a patient/caregiver support program that has been proven to enhance quality of life for cancer patients and allows hospitals and their social workers to more efficiently triage and attend to the psychosocial needs of a much greater number of patients. 

The Lance Armstrong Foundation is committed to supporting community organizations in their efforts to help cancer survivors face the challenges and changes that come with cancer. Since its inception in 1997, the organization has invested more than $70 million in community-centered organizations.

About Methodist University Hospital

The flagship of the Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare system, Methodist University Hospital is located in the heart of the Memphis Medical Center and has 669 beds. Methodist is affiliated with the University of Tennessee Health Science Center and serves as its primary teaching site. The hospital operates its cancer service line in conjunction with The West Clinic, the region’s premier provider of cancer services in the Mid-South.  A tertiary care and referral center, Methodist University Hospital has one of the largest neuroscience programs in the country.  MUH’s transplant program, in partnership with the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, specializes in solid organ transplants of the kidney, liver and pancreas and is among the top 10 programs in the country. Within Methodist University Hospital is the separately licensed Methodist Extended Care Hospital, a long-term, 36-bed acute care facility that serves as a "hospital within a hospital." For more information, visit www.methodisthealth.org

About The West Clinic

The West Clinic has been the region’s premier provider of cancer care in the Mid-South for over 30 years. With a team second to none in breadth of expertise, dedication to excellence, and commitment to compassionate care, our multidisciplinary physician group is comprised of 33 specialists in Medical Oncology, Hematology, Gynecologic Oncology, Breast Surgery, Endocrinology, Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology, Pain and Palliative Care, and other advanced medical care. With eight locations in Memphis, West TN, and North MS, patients across the Mid-South have greater access to the highest quality care available.

The West Clinic’s clinical research program, under the direction of Lee S. Schwartzberg, MD, FACP, Medical Director, is internationally renowned. Over the past two decades, West Clinic has consistently been one of the first centers in the US to gain experience and hasten the development of new drugs for breast cancer, colon cancer, lung cancer, prostate cancer, lymphoma, and many other diseases.  Today, our researchers are investigating new drug therapies through participation in national clinical trials. For more information visit www.westclinic.com

About the Lance Armstrong Foundation
The Lance Armstrong Foundation serves people affected by cancer and empowers them to take action against the world’s leading cause of death. With its iconic yellow LIVESTRONG wristband, the Foundation became a symbol of hope and inspiration to people throughout the world affected by cancer. Created in 1997 by cancer survivor and champion cyclist Lance Armstrong, the Foundation provides free patient navigation services to survivors with financial, emotional and practical challenges that accompany the disease.  Known for its powerful brand – LIVESTRONG – the Foundation is also a leader in the global movement on behalf of 28 million people living with cancer today. Since its inception in 1997, the Foundation has raised more than $450 million for the fight against cancer. For more information, visit LIVESTRONG.org.