Cancer patients will get help because of 20th anniversary event at Augusta Health

augusta-health-headerIn celebration of the Augusta Health’s 20th anniversary, the Augusta Health Foundation will host a special celebration of this momentous occasion while also benefitting cancer patients in need.  The event will be held on Friday, September 12 at 7 pm in the former Moss Museum in Waynesboro.  Tickets are $100 per person.  For information or to register for the event, contact the Augusta Health Foundation at 540.332.5174.

“We are very excited about engaging the community to help us celebrate our 20th anniversary,” said Tami Radecke, Vice President and Executive Director of the Augusta Health Foundation.  “And, we are equally excited to be able to help cancer patients through the Cancer Services Bridge Fund.”

The Bridge Fundbridges the gap’ for cancer patients—providing financial assistance to them when no other assistance is available.  At times, the Bridge Fund covers additional medical costs like co-pays and nutritional supplements not covered by insurance, or outpatient surgery for port placement before receiving IV chemotherapy.  But the Bridge Fund has also covered the cost of wigs, hats, mastectomy bras and lymphedema sleeves.  Other times the Bridge Fund is used to cover basic living expenses when patients can’t continue to work.

Leigh Anderson, Licensed Clinical Social Worker at the Augusta Health Cancer Center, administers the fund and knows what a difference it makes in patients’ lives.  She cites many examples:  A patient with head and neck cancer was able to get crucial dental treatment that allowed radiation to be safely administered, other patients were able to purchase medications that they would not have been able to afford had it not been for the Bridge Fund, and the Bridge Fund has also provided transportation for patients traveling from as far as Lexington and National Bridge for treatments.

“One aspect of the Bridge Fund that is most attractive is that 100 percent of its charitable donations go to patients in need; there are no administrative expenses for the fund,” said Radecke. “The Bridge Fund has made a big difference in so many lives.”

The Augusta Health Foundation was established in 2001 by a large bequest from a community resident. The Foundation was considered a “reverse foundation” because its purpose was to provide grants to nonprofit organizations to improve the health of the community.  Due to changes in IRS regulations, the Augusta Health Board of Directors modified the purpose of the Foundation in 2012 to be the charitable arm of Augusta Health.  The Foundation now seeks philanthropic gifts to fund new and expanded patient care programs, scholarship aid for caregivers, and new facilities, technology and equipment.  Since 2012, grants to the community have continued through Augusta Health’s Community Benefit Committee, and more than $300,000 in grants have been provided annually.

Augusta Health is an independent, nonprofit community hospital whose mission is to promote the health and well-being of our community through access to excellent care.  Named one of the 100 Top Hospitals in America by Thomson Reuters in both 2011 and 2012, Augusta Health has also been nationally recognized by HealthGrades as one of America’s 100 Best Hospitals for clinical excellence and patient safety for the last three consecutive years.  For more information about Augusta Health, its programs or its services, please contact public relations at 540.245.7329 or 540.221.7329, or visit our website, www.augustahealth.com.

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