Beyond clinical care: Helping the whole cancer patient

An estimated 50,450 people in Georgia are likely to be diagnosed with cancer in 2019, according to the most recent Cancer Facts and Figures report from the American Cancer Society.

While the immediate focus is on treatments that combat the physical manifestations of cancer, some centers also offer services to help patients, survivors and their families deal with long-term emotional, financial and other burdens of the disease.

That was the idea behind the Loran Smith Center for Cancer Support. It’s named for Loran Smith, a man who is renowned for his work with the University of Georgia athletics program, and whose voice is familiar to many thousands of sports fans who have never been anywhere near Athens. Smith is also a cancer survivor.

Amid medical efforts to keep cancer patients alive, the emotional pressures they face can sometimes get little attention. But research suggests that patients want their physicians to take issues such as costs and spirtiual needs into account during treatment.

Yunxuan Gu is currently pursing her master’s degree in journalism at the University of Georgia. Click here to see her full post on Georgia Health News.