Spectrum Health helps, honors, and celebrates cancer survivors

The first Sunday in June is National Cancer Survivors Day, which is an annual, treasured celebration of life that's held in hundreds of communities nationwide.

This day is a celebration for those why have survived, an inspiration for those recently diagnosed, a gathering of support for families and an outreach to the community.

Jessica Majerle, event coordinator for Spectrum Health Cancer Center and Susanne Pettigrew, physician assistant and program lead for Spectrum Health Cancer Center's Survivorship Clinic stopped by to talk about survivorship and how Spectrum Health is celebrating Cancer Survivors Day this year.

Thanks to advances in cancer prevention, early detection, treatment, and follow-up care, more people than ever before are surviving cancer. In America alone, there are an estimated 16 million cancer survivors, and the number is expected to grow to over 20 million in the next few years.

Cancer survivors may face numerous challenges during and after treatment. They may face:

    • Limited access to cancer specialists and promising new treatments
    • Denial of health insurance and life insurance coverage
    • Difficulty finding jobs
    • Economic burdens due to mounting medical expenses, lost wages, and reduced productivity

At the Spectrum Health Cancer Center, they make sure patients have a smooth transition after their cancer journey. The Survivorship Clinic provides services to help cancer survivors live well after cancer treatment.

Insurance generally covers this visit in the same way as other cancer care visits. As always, it’s best to check with the insurance provider to determine individual coverage.

Spectrum Health is holding their annual celebration for cancer survivors, along with their friends and family, on June 5. There will be information on during and after treatment, nutrition and physical activity information, a variety of vendors with beneficial community and health information. Local community partners will be on hand with fun activities and giveaways as well.

The festivities will take place throughout the Lemmen-Holton Cancer Pavilion from 1 to 5 p.m. Each floor will host different activities, such as musical entertainment, food, information booths, massages and so much more!

The event is free, but attendees need to RSVP at spectrumhealth.org/celebrate-survivors.

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