Hug Every Day

21st Century Oncology Blog

Hug Every Day

21st Century Oncology Blog

Just BE

By Kim Commins-Tzoumakas | March 8, 2019

cancer treatment

“There are only two days in the year that nothing can be done. One is called yesterday and the other is called tomorrow, so today is the right day to love, believe, do and mostly live.” – The Dalai Lama

I read the above quote the other day and I thought of our 21CO brand and the patient research and insight behind it. That cancer patients want to enjoy their highest level of wellbeing, regardless of where they are in life or what they are going through. “BE” – BE in the moment. BE fully present. BE there. BE there for someone. Just BE. It’s what we call ourselves, Human BEings.

In our recent study, when patients were asked what are the most important factors when seeking cancer treatment, “Leading Physicians” and “Cutting-Edge Technology” were the top two. They want the best care and a Dream Team to help them beat this.

But patients experience a rollercoaster of emotions when they are diagnosed with cancer and begin to do whatever it takes to beat it. At any moment, a patient can go from fear to fight to the powerful desire to thrive. While not achievable for all, the ultimate goal is to more than live but to thrive. In an article for, Dr. Lynne Eldridge describes, “The goal is to not only be a cancer survivor but to be a ‘cancer thriver.’ For many, cancer always remains in the background – you’re never truly free. But, there is the chance to move forward and have a fulfilling life, even with the specter always there.”

And “Thriving” is an important part of the process.  Patients often tell us that they experience:

  • A renewed appreciation of life
  • Empowerment
  • Increased awareness of emotional health
  • Spirituality – The National Cancer Society defines spirituality as, “a person’s belief about the meaning of life.”

In fact, when we added “Spiritual, Emotional and Physical Treatment” to “Leading Physicians” and “Cutting-Edge Technology,” “Spiritual, Emotional and Physical Treatment” moved to the top position as the most important factor when seeking treatment.

A study by the Division of Radiation Oncology, San Gerardo Hospital, Monza, Milan, Italy with a group of 50 metastatic non-small cell lung cancer patients found: The tumor response rate achieved in patients with a high degree of faith and spirituality was significantly higher than in the base group of patients.

In addition to focusing on surgery, chemo or radiation, integrated medicine focuses on the well-being of the patient. Patients practice movement therapy, acupuncture, yoga, music therapy, and working out.

Dr. Niraj Mehta, a 21CO radiation oncologist at South Florida Radiation Oncology in Miami, hosts dance therapy classes every week for his patients. “My inspiration was seeing patients making moves, connecting with their emotions and learning, at that moment, how to live,” says Dr. Mehta. It’s a place and time where his patients come together and feel empowered. “They realize that whatever they have does not define them,” he told us.

Which is why we preach: BE around. BE around friends and family. BE well. BE alive. BE you. And mostly, BE.

The Hug Every Day blog will offer periodic insights and guidance from the 21st Century CEO, Kim Commins-Tzoumakas. Kim is no-nonsense, but also very caring. And she is excited to have this opportunity to share her vision for 21CO with you.