Baylor College of Medicine awarded Ovarian Cancer Research Fund grant to start gynecologic cancer patient support program


HOUSTON - (May 27, 2014) - Women recently diagnosed with gynecologic cancer at Baylor College of Medicine clinics will have access to a new support program that pairs patients with professionally trained volunteers who are survivors of gynecolgic cancer. The program is thanks to a new grant from the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund.

Drs. Marian Yvette Williams-Brown and Celestine Tung received a $50,000 grant from the organization to initiate the Woman to Woman Program at Baylor. They will oversee the implementation of the program at Baylor-staffed clinics at the Texas Children's Pavilion for Women and Harris Health System's Smith Clinic.

"Physicians and other health care providers can explain a diagnosis or a procedure in great detail, but this does not compare to hearing the testimony from a patient who has actually experienced it," said Williams-Brown, assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Baylor. "Bridging this gap will only help us care for our patients."

The program is free for patients and is a professionally led, volunteer-driven support, education and advocacy model for women undergoing treatment for gynecologic cancer.

Women who are survivors of gynecologic cancers offer emotional support while mentoring, encouraging and empowering newly diagnosed women and sharing information and resources about the disease.

"This grant will provide much needed support for women going through a difficult time in their life that only someone else who has or is going through it can provide," said Tung, assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Baylor.

Volunteers are trained by a medical social worker with the assistance of materials designed by the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund specifically for the program.

The program supports all phases of treatment, recurrence and recovery.

The Woman to Woman program was started by the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund in 2003 at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York City.

QVC is the national sponsor of the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund's Woman to Woman Program.

If you are a gynecologic cancer survivor and interested in participating, please contact Casey Steele Martinez, medical social worker, at casey.martinez@bcm.edu or 832-826-3748. Martinez will also serve as the program coordinator.

About Texas Children’s Hospital

Texas Children’s Hospital, a not-for-profit health care organization, is committed to creating a healthier future for children and women throughout the global community by leading in patient care, education and research. Consistently ranked as the best children’s hospital in Texas, and among the top in the nation, Texas Children’s has garnered widespread recognition for its expertise and breakthroughs in pediatric and women’s health. The hospital includes the Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute; the Feigin Center for pediatric research; Texas Children’s Pavilion for Women, a comprehensive obstetrics/gynecology facility focusing on high-risk births; Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus, a community hospital in suburban West Houston; and Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands, a second community hospital planned to open in 2017. The organization also created the nation’s first HMO for children, has the largest pediatric primary care network in the country and a global health program that’s channeling care to children and women all over the world. Texas Children’s Hospital is affiliated with Baylor College of Medicine. For more information, go to www.texaschildrens.org. Get the latest news by visiting the online newsroom and Twitter at twitter.com/texaschildrens.