Health & Wellness

'The Art of Healing' Event Renews Beauty In Life for Cancer Survivors at Summit Medical Group MD Anderson Cancer Center

3d7f65cf45d3bc253414_Shannon_Vick_speaks_at_Art_of_Healing.JPG
Shannon Vick, was diagnosed with breast cancer when she was 33-years-old and 27 weeks pregnant with her fourth child, shared her story among fellow cancer survivors at “The Art of Healing.”
35e4029a2027df736a27_NJSO_at_Art_of_Healing.JPG
String quartet of the NJSO gave a special performance at “The Art of Healing,” an event held by Summit Medical Group MD Anderson Cancer Center in honor of all cancer survivors. ​​
b52c8ed65888b6cbb9fb_FullSizeRender__58_.jpg
Dr. Molly Gabel, Medical Director, Radiology Oncology Credits: Bobbie Peer
e973c1a3e4d551ae08b5_IMG_6836.JPG
Lynn Lang, R.N., Chief Integration Officer Credits: Bobbie Peer
2691ddc5b36574ca6a75_IMG_6886.JPG
Cancer survivor Shannon Vick of Berkeley Heights talks to attendees after presentation and show. Credits: Bobbie Peer
7b856e8f51dba4acc98d_IMG_6845.JPG
The attendees enjoyed a buffet before the "Art of Healing" presentation and entertainment. Credits: Bobbie Peer
3d7f65cf45d3bc253414_Shannon_Vick_speaks_at_Art_of_Healing.JPG

Hope is like the sun, which, as we journey toward it, cast the shadow of our burden behind us. -- Samuel Smiles "Wherever you are on your journey as a survivor, never lose hope," said cancer survivor Shannon Vick of Berkeley Heights.

BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ -  It's been a year since the launch of the partnership between Summit Medical Group and MD Anderson Cancer Center, and together, they have met many milestones.

Summit Medical Group MD Anderson Cancer Center hosted a well attended "The Art of Healing" event last week at their Berkeley Heights campus to honor people afflicted with cancer through art, inspirational music, and story-sharing. The evening paid tribute to survivors and the commitment of Summit Medical Group MD Anderson Cancer Center to promoting healthy and happy survivorship for their patients. 

Sign Up for E-News

The evening included music by Rebekah Johnson, Hyewon Kim, Mike Stewart and Ming Yang, a string quartet from the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, playing their popular Broadway Bound program through the NJSO Music and Wellness Program and art exhibits with local artists in attendance. 

Cancer survivor Shannon Vick of Berkeley Heights shared her story and was a beacon of hope and inspiration to the room of survivors. 

The unimaginable happened to Vick four years ago at age 33, 26 weeks pregnant with her fourth child -- she found a lump in her right breast.  " [I was] young, no family history, and I didn't give cancer much of a thought," said Vick. "I found it because I was pregnant and my breasts were sore."

She was the poster child for low risk for breast cancer. She reiterated to the room of survivors, who also know too well, -- the importance to be proactive -- and not take the mindset that it won't happen to me.

She walked through her journey from diagnosis, 12 weeks of chemo to the birth of her child, a recovery period, to more chemo and radiation, to her mastectomy and reconstructive surgery. "When I really think about what I have been through, it's hard to believe that I did it," she said. "It sounds exhausting and it was." ---  When she looks back,  she considers herself lucky. "The baby girl got me through the first four treatments. Whenever I started to feel sorry for myself, all I had to look at was my four beautiful children and I knew I was lucky because this treatment existed and I was going to be healthy when it was all over," she said. 

When Dr. Diana Addis, Breast Surgeon at Summit Medical Group told Vick that "we have a plan for you and the outlook was good," she told her doctor that there was no other outlook but good. "I had four kids under the age of five and one that I hadn't met yet. And there was no way I was planning to let them grow up without a mother. I was ready to do whatever it took to get healthy."

"The amount of collaboration and seamless communication between the doctors in the group made all the difference in getting me and my unborn child through this ordeal safely," she said. 

Vick has the utmost gratitude and respect for everyone at Summit Medical Group, from the "receptionists who remembers your name, and the nurse navigators who hold your hand through the pain and make you smile despite of it, to the doctors who diagnose and treat you -- doing everything in their power to make sure you walk out those doors as a healthy person."

This collaboration and seamless communication is a focus at Summit Medical Group MD Anderson. Lynn Lang, R.N., Chief Integration Officer, provided some prospective of the advancements since Summit Medical Group's partnership with MD Anderson Cancer Center. She told the attendees the center places special emphasis on continuity of care by providing fully integrated, multidisciplinary cancer care for their patients.

The partnership with the No. 1 cancer center is a "true partnership," said Dr. Molly Gabel, Medical Director of Radiation Oncology. "We share our best practices and they share with us," she said. "They provided a lot of guidance and expert advise. As a result, we have met a lot milestones over the past year."

One big change since the partnership is the clinical research program, said Dr. Gabel. "Because of MD Anderson, we have clinical trials here that offer wonderful new drugs that can increase chance of cure for cancer." 

"What we want is, as a group, to offer same chance of survival with less side effects. We are looking at trials to operate with smaller incisions, shorten hospital stays, decrease the amount of days lost from work or time away from family, to minimize the side effects of chemo therapy and radiation. That embodies our culture and our commitment to really promoting healthy and happy comfortable survivorship for our patients," she said.

Major advances in prevention, early detection and treatment have resulted in long survival, said Dr. Lisa Mills, Oncologist and Hematologist. She raised awareness of ongoing challenges faced by cancer survivors today.

The follow up care beyond cancer assesses effectiveness of treatment, recovery from treatment and addresses short term and long term side effects along with any new health issues that arise, she said.

She talked about survivor programs and medical management advise to survivors to create long term goals and tools to aide in side effects for fatigue, pain and chemo brain offered through Summit Medical Group MD Anderson Cancer Center.  

The guests had the opportunity to ask the musicians questions and meet the artists who have their work on exhibit in the Summit Medical Group cafeteria in Berkeley Heights. Artists included in " Voices of the Journey" Art Show are Marion Behr, Scultpor; EJ Davis, Photographer; Trish Gianakis, Painter; and Paula Pearl, Pastel artist. A few attendees went home as winners of pieces of art donated to the survivor event.

About Summit Medical Group MD Anderson: Cancer patients in Northern New Jersey and the New York Metropolitan area now have access to enhanced cancer treatment, as part of Summit Medical Group’s partnership with MD Anderson Cancer Center. This integrated program, which provides medical oncology, infusion and diagnostic imaging, is in place at Summit Medical Group’s flagship campus at 1 Diamond Hill Road in Berkeley Heights. It includes access to MD Anderson’s world-renowned treatment protocols, extensive clinical trials and cutting-edge research. Together, Summit Medical Group and MD Anderson are building a state-of-the-art cancer treatment center in Florham Park, NJ. A global leader in cancer care, MD Anderson is ranked the leading cancer center in the United States. You can learn more about MD Anderson at mdanderson.org.

Our partnership provides comprehensive cancer care to our patients—from prevention, screening, and diagnosis to survivorship—preserving the patient-physician relationships that have existed for many years. Personalized treatment plans help ensure the best possible outcomes while we help you adjust to, cope with, and manage your disease.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Berkeley Heights

Sleep out at Covenant House

June 18, 2018

I can enjoy the same movies over and over like it were the first time to see them.  My kids roll their eyes at this.  Well, many unimaginable things happen as you become a certain age, and you tend to learn to accept those things graciously as gift.   But I remember the movie “The Blind Side.”  Until I saw that movie, I didn’t know homeless children ...

Shakespeare in the Park Returns to Union County, Sunday, July 8

June 24, 2018

The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders is pleased to announce the return of Shakespeare in the Park this summer. The first performance will be presented on Sunday, July 8 at 7:00 p.m. at the Raymond Wood Bauer Promenade in Linden.

The Shrew Mechanicals Troupe from The Shakespeare Theatre of New jersey will present an hour long performance of “Powerful Trouble,” a stirring ...

Imagine Hosts Annual Breakfast Fundraiser

Nearly 350 guests attended Imagine’s 7th annual breakfast fundraiser, Seasons of Hope, on June 6th, 2018 at Shackamaxon Country Club in Scotch Plains.  “We especially want to thank our breakfast sponsors -- our platinum sponsor Merck, our bronze sponsors ConnectOne Bank and Northfield Bank, the volunteers and donors that contributed to the breakfast” said Imagine Board ...

Local at-risk youth celebrate year of achievements at Community Access Unlimited

Community Access Unlimited (CAU) last night celebrated the achievements of a number of at-risk youth who are members of the agency's Transitional Opportunities Program (TOP). Each of these youth are within New Jersey's child services system and faced a number of life challenges before coming to CAU and TOP and since then have made significant progress in plotting a brighter future with ...

Union County Residents Can “Recycle Right” without Plastic Bags

The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders reminds residents that plastic bags and other excluded items cannot be recycled through their local curbside pick-up programs.

“Union County residents have a good recycling rate compared to other counties in our state, and we want to improve on this record and set a high bar,” said Freeholder Chairman Sergio Granados. “Every ...

Missing in North Plainfield: Have You Seen Angel?

June 21, 2018

NORTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - Have you seen Angel?

Angel is a seven year old black and white Husky last seen near Westervelt Ave. and Manning Ave. on June 16. Her family says she is very friendly. 

If found, call Andrea at  888-466-3242.

 

Linden Man Arrested After Explosion in Cranford

June 21, 2018

CRANFORD - On Wednesday, June 20, 2018 at 7:06 p.m. the Cranford Police Department received
information that an explosion was heard in the area of Raritan Road and Summit Terrace. Through
a joint investigation with the Union County Prosecutor's Office and Linden Police Department, the
Cranford Police Department Detective Bureau identified a suspect through surveillance video ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_3e68b1f0c65d22cd79bc_d6a71058d531d31a8cff_achievers

Mon, June 25

Summit YMCA, Summit

June 2018 College Tour

Education

Carousel_image_946d04346cba30ae4cb8_st._huberts_3

Mon, June 25, 7:00 AM

Summit YMCA, Summit

Pet Supply Drive at the Summit YMCA to Benefit ...

Giving Back

Mon, June 25, 9:00 AM

Madison

Kids' Critter Camp

Education

Mon, June 25, 10:00 AM

New Providence Memorial Library, New Providence

Summer Reading Kick-Off: Eyes of the Wild

Arts & Entertainment

Mon, June 25, 10:00 AM

New Providence Memorial Library, New Providence

Summer Reading for Adults at the New Providence ...

Education

Carousel_image_d3e87fc5bc256b5f023b_second_adulthood

Mon, June 25, 12:30 PM

Summit YMCA, Summit

Lunch & Learn "The Second Adulthood"

Health & Wellness

What's Hot and What's Not

Summer is a great time to take a step back, sip a cool beverage, and take a look at what’s going on in the world of college admissions.  Departments use the summer to evaluate how their year went and plan on any changes they want to make for the fall.  Did they over-enroll? Under-enroll?  What application materials were useful to them?  Which were redundant or time ...

Summertime Air Quality Issues

Summer weather can be harmful to your health due to air pollutants like ozone, mold, and moisture that are more prevalent both inside and outside than they are during cooler months. 

Sunny days, warm temperatures, and light winds don’t allow pollutants to be cleared from outside air. Instead, they encourage the formation of ozone, a leading air pollutant.  Ozone is ...