WILMINGTON — Getting to and from medical treatments is one of the greatest concerns cancer patients face during treatment. To ensure patients get to those much-needed treatments, the American Cancer Society provides free rides through its Road To Recovery program.
The Society is currently looking for volunteer drivers in Highland and Clinton counties so that all patients have transportation when they need it. An estimated 67,150 Ohio residents will learn that they have cancer this year; however getting to their scheduled treatment may be a challenge.
“One cancer patient requiring radiation therapy could need anywhere from 20 to 30 trips to treatment in six weeks,” said Heather Robison, Program Manager for the American Cancer Society. “A patient receiving chemotherapy might report for treatment weekly for up to a year. In many cases, a patient is driven to hospitals or clinics by relatives or friends, but even these patients must occasionally seek alternative transportation. That’s where the Road To Recovery program comes in.”
“The program not only helps patients, but is also rewarding for the volunteer. Several of our drivers have volunteered for a number of years,” added Robison.
The program has been available in Highland and Clinton Counties for several years, but sadly, there are not enough drivers to keep up with the need.
In 2018, cancer patients requested 64 rides to treatment, but unfortunately, 32 rides went unmet due to no volunteer available, leaving patients scrambling to find alternate transportation.
There will be information meetings being held for anyone interested in becoming a volunteer driver — on Wednesday, May 22 from 11 a.m.-noon at the Hillsboro Public Library, 10 Willettsville Pike; and in Wilmington from 2-3 p.m. at the Wilmington Library 268 N. South St. This is an opportunity to come learn about the program and get any questions answered.
To be a volunteer driver, an interested person must simply have a reliable vehicle, a valid driver’s license, proof of auto insurance, a good driving record, access to a computer and minimal computer knowledge.
For additional information about the Road To Recovery program, call 1-800-227-2345 or visit cancer.org. Please register for the information meeting by calling Heather at 404-327-6583 or email Heather.Robison@cancer.org