GWC Quarterly Meeting, “World Class Care at Home”, at Self Regional Healthcare Cancer Center, May 16, 2022

On Monday evening, May 16th, members, and guests of Greenwood Women Care met at the Self Regional Cancer Center for the second Quarterly Meeting of 2022. Self Regional Hospital provided refreshments both in the lobby and outside in the Cancer Center’s Healing Garden. There was a delicious spread of cheese, fruit, petite chicken salad and pimento cheese croissant sandwiches, as well as a variety of petit fours, various wines, and a delicious punch.

Laura Bachinski, Vice-Chair of the GWC Advisory Board, called the meeting to order and, after welcoming all members and guests, thanked Self Regional and the Cancer Center’s staff for hosting the meeting. She then gave a brief summary of the various GWC committees, reminding everyone of the focus of GWC:  to encourage and support our community of Greenwood. She reviewed the benefits of membership, committee involvement, and spoke of opportunities to give additional gifts to the GWC Granting Fund in honor of, or in memory of, loved ones.

Summer Booker, Treasurer of GWC’s Advisory Board, introduced the member testimonial segment of the evening’s program. Debbie Coesens spoke about her reasons for joining Greenwood Women Care. Having moved from Spartanburg to Greenwood following retirement, Debbie was introduced to GWC by a friend. She spoke of how the mission of “Learn, Give, and Grow” truly resonates with her. Next, Tara Smith talked about why she joined GWC. Tara, a native of Long Island, New York, moved to Greenwood in 2013 and her initial membership in 2019 was a gift from her husband. Tara stated that “we are all women, and we are all philanthropists, and we become like those who we are surrounded by!” She has continued to renew her membership as she enjoys the welcoming spirit of GWC and the philanthropic aspect of the organization.

Mamie Nicholson, Vice Chair of the Board of Self Regional Healthcare Foundation and GWC member, introduced the program portion. Mamie welcomed everyone and then spent a moment recognizing other individuals and doctors affiliated with Self Regional that were present, including the CEO of Self Regional, Dr. Matt Logan, and Dr. Priya Kumar, CMO of Self Regional and GWC member. She then introduced Julie McDade, Director of Cancer Services at the Cancer Center. Ms. McDade’s presentation for the Cancer Center was titled “World Class Care at Home” and it elaborated how our very own Cancer Center has become an oasis in our community, providing cancer care here at home which rivals cancer treatment offered at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, TX and Sloan Memorial Kettering in New York City, two of the most renowned cancer hospitals in the United States.  The physicians and staff at Self Regional see each patient, along with their families, as neighbors. The team at the Cancer Center walks alongside them in their journey through illness: “We are taking care of our neighbors, family, and friends.” State of the art medical treatments are provided by this dedicated team of doctors, nurses, and staff. Medical and radiation oncologists work with innovative protocols and the newest technologies in cancer treatment to individualize each patient’s care. Currently, the Center has over 300 patients, receiving three hundred individualized treatment protocols!

Ms. McDade described a new screening program the center has for low dose CT lung cancer. Showing national cancer statistics, she attributed the high cancer survival rate to early detection. She also noted the various partnerships and collaborations that helped to make the Cancer Center successful. The Center’s staff and equipment are accredited by the Commission on Cancer, a program of the American College of Surgeons, including a newly acquired machine called the “Edge” that can pinpoint the exact location of cancer in a patient’s body. Ms. McDade concluded by encouraging everyone to engage in a healthy lifestyle and to take advantage of cancer screenings. Risk mitigation is critical: weight loss, exercise (“sitting is the new smoking”), alcohol in moderation, smoking cessation, and sunscreen (“when in doubt, sunscreen it out”). Questions were addressed by Ms. McDade and Dr. Ruiling Yuan.

Lisa Smith presented Ms. McDade with the book, Seeds and Trees: A Children’s Book about the Power of Words, by Brandon Walden, which will be contributed by GWC to the Children’s Collection of the Greenwood County Public Library in her honor.

Jan Puzar made an announcement from the Grants Review and Awards Committee regarding the workshop, Grant Writing 101, designed by this committee to help staff and volunteers of local nonprofits apply for grants. The course is free to registered participants and will be held on Tuesday, July 26th from 10 AM-12:30 PM at Westside Baptist Church.

Edris Louise Robinson, Chair of the Program and Education Committee, made closing remarks. She thanked the Cancer Center for their program and remembered how much their team meant to her and her family as they cared for her brother in his own cancer journey. She announced our next meeting will be August 21, 2022, at the Greenwood Genetics Center where the 2021 grant recipients will be celebrated. She then concluded the meeting by reminding us, “Women, together, can rock the world”!