Atlanta, Ga. (June 25, 2012) – Former Equifax Chairman and CEO and Atlanta resident Thomas F. (Tom) Chapman and his wife Karen donated over $1 million to Piedmont Healthcare in support of an expansion of the health system’s Cancer Wellness services.
Their gift will enable Cancer Wellness at Piedmont to continue offering free programs to cancer patients – regardless of whether or not they are Piedmont patients - such as yoga classes, expressive arts classes and nutrition workshops. Last year, Cancer Wellness at Piedmont helped 1,800 patients.
“As a result of Mr. and Mrs. Chapman’s generosity, hundreds of cancer patients will see an improvement in their quality of life and have increased access to professionally-led programs,” said Tim Stack, president and CEO of Piedmont Healthcare. “We’re grateful for the Chapmans and their continued support.”
Chapman, who lost his first wife to cancer in 2003, supported the initial development of the Cancer Wellness program in memory of his wife and the challenges she experienced as a patient. His most recent donation also will be used to hire three patient navigators and two financial navigators, who will serve cancer patients from all Piedmont Healthcare-affiliated hospitals.
“Our family knows the benefits of navigation and cancer wellness programming, and want to ensure that patients and families battling cancer have access to these vital services,” said Chapman. “We believe in giving back to the community and know that funding this initiative will improve the lives of thousands. To have our gift touch all the communities that Piedmont Healthcare serves is very gratifying.”
The patient navigators, whose primary responsibility is to guide cancer patients through their continuum of care and provide comfort during this difficult time, will be dedicated almost exclusively to radiation oncology patients. The two financial navigators also will ease the minds of cancer patients as they help them to refocus their energy on recovery by addressing hardships and access issues caused by financial barriers.
“Cancer treatment has gotten so expensive and the world of insurance is so complex,” said Perry Ballard, M.D., of Peachtree Hematology Oncology Consultants. “We realize that, in order to win the battle against cancer, we have to offer more than just medical care. The expansion of Cancer Wellness and the addition of these navigators will help patients in their fight and will help them find ways of getting them the treatment they need.”
In appreciation for their continued support of Cancer Wellness at Piedmont, the Wellness Café at Piedmont Hospital and Piedmont Fayette Hospital will be named in the Chapman family’s honor.
As a not-for-profit health system, Piedmont Healthcare and its affiliated organizations rely on the generosity of donors like Mr. and Mrs. Chapman in order to offer many programs to the community. For more information about Cancer Wellness at Piedmont Healthcare or to make a donation in support of the program, visit piedmont.org.