HONOLULU – The Queen’s Medical Center in Honolulu has received a Transportation Grant from the American Cancer Society for $15,000 to help cancer patients on Oahu get to and from cancer treatment. American Cancer Society officials recently met with Queen’s Cancer Center representatives for a check presentation in front of the Arthur A. Ushijima Building on The Queen’s Medical Center campus.
Cancer patients undergoing treatment frequently require assistance getting to and from facilities, often creating a financial and logistical burden. These funds will be used to address the transportation needs of cancer patients on Oahu.
An estimated 7,570 Hawaii residents will learn they have cancer this year and getting to their scheduled treatment may be one of their greatest roadblocks. To help patients get the critical care they need, American Cancer Society community transportation grants are awarded at a local level to health systems, treatment centers and community organizations. These grants are available in select communities through an application process and focus on addressing unmet transportation needs of cancer patients, particularly vulnerable populations experiencing an unequal burden of cancer.
“Although disparities exist, nobody suffering from cancer should be deprived of having access to the best possible care,” said Shane Morita, MD, Ph.D., F.A.C.S., Medical Director of Surgical Oncology at The Queen’s Medical Center, and Chair of the Board for the American Cancer Society Hawaii/Guam Area. “The Society collaborates with community health partners to reach individuals in areas with higher burdens of cancer and limited or no access to transportation because even the best treatment can’t work if a patient can’t get there.”
“This American Cancer Society grant is very exciting and offers us the opportunity to help cancer patients get to treatment when transportation is a problem,” said Darlena Chadwick, VP of Patient Care at The Queen’s Health System. “The impact of the grant will be far-reaching and will save lives.”
“Some patients don’t have access to transportation at all or are too fatigued or sick to drive themselves,” said Holly Ho-Chee-DuPont, Patient Navigation Coordinator at The Queen’s Medical Center. “Access to care is a big problem in our country, with low-income people and those living in rural communities suffering the most from disparities. Transportation programs are vital for these patients to get the treatments they need and deserve.”