May 11, 2023

The RCCS Test: How Well Do You Know Us?

Ruchama Schnaidman

RCCS helps people with cancer, right?

Right. But what does “help” even mean?

You’ve heard of RCCS. You may even know someone who has been helped by RCCS. But how well do you know RCCS?

RCCS and a cancer diagnosis are synonymous. It’s not for nothing that RCCS is one of the first phone calls a person or family makes after the initial diagnosis or even suspicion of cancer. And it’s not for nothing that the initial phone call sparks an ongoing relationship that spans the entire cancer journey. Because the “help” that you might imagine when you think of RCCS is just the very tip of what RCCS really does.

Ready for some behind-the-scenes information? Join us as we raise the bar on patient care, support, and medical knowledge and guidance. With Hashem’s help, we’re doing more for those who need us most. Here’s your chance to learn moreabout our work.

Test your RCCS knowledge

RCCS provides all of the following services to cancer patients and their families aside from:

  1. Medical referrals
  2. Ongoing medical support
  3. Predicting the weather
  4. $1,000 insurance co-pay card

Here’s a hint: When a patient calls RCCS, we don’t just give medical referrals. We begin a relationship that spans hundreds of phone calls, advice, hand-holding, and research. A phone call to RCCS isn’t a one and done. It’s stepping into secure, caring, and incredibly knowledgeable hands—hands that don’t rest.

Which division of RCCS is facing a major expansion in the next year?

  1. Medical research department, to provide the latest, cutting-edge access to clinical trials
  2. Insurance advocacy department, to ensure that every patient has the best, most targeted coverage
  3. Medical department, to provide information and accessibility to top doctors and hospitals
  4. Care management department, to ensure that the patient is emotionally and logistically cared for on their cancer journey

Here’s a hint: Every aspect of patient care is our priority. But some priorities need extra attention, and this year we’re going big in one direction to provide the absolute best. Because when it comes to cancer, it takes a specialist to know a specialist.

How many people does RCCS Lakewood currently serve?

  1. 157
  2. 265
  3. 388
  4. 97

Here’s a hint: We’re not proud of our swelling numbers, but we are proud of the care we provide on an individualistic level. While no two cancers, patients, or stories are the same, the RCCS story is consistent—expert, high-level knowledge and relentless advocacy and care. No matter how many people turn to us, we simply don’t stop.

In the past 12 months, RCCS Lakewood’s annual budget rose by:

  1. 10.34 percent
  2. 5.234 percent
  3. 12.454 percent
  4. 3.452 percent

Here’s a hint: Our current annual budget for RCCS Lakewood is 3.2 million. That’s 3,200,000 dollars used to support top-tier medical research and ongoing patient support in Lakewood.  Do you remember our budget from last year?

What does RCCS not do when a patient runs out of standard treatment options?

  1. Defer to the doctor and accept their verdict
  2. Chase down every possible medical study
  3. Do extensive research and follow leads most mainstream doctors know nothing about
  4. Suggest treatment options that can be five or 10 years ahead of their time

Hint: There are brilliant doctors and researchers in far-off places around the country who discover treatment protocols that are well researched, tested, and proven to show results but have not yet been implemented for specific cancers. By working with top specialists and comparing different cases, RCCS opens access to treatments that can be five to 10 years ahead of their time.

RCCS is raising the bar on:

  1. Our medical referral and support
  2. Patient advocacy and care
  3. Our high-level research and medical team
  4. All of the above

Some things are important to some. Others are important to all. And some things are more important than anything else. When a person faces a cancer diagnosis, they have experts to turn to—experts who immerse themselves in each type of cancer—its diagnosis, research, treatment options, and doctors—and experts who take care to the next level.

The need is real and our bar is rising… Will you join us?

Ready for answers?

Who is RCCS and what do we do?

When Yanky L.’s doctor raised his hands in defeat, Yanky turned back to the RCCS medical coordinator dedicated to his case. He had exhausted all standard treatment options, and nothing was working. But that didn’t stop RCCS. RCCS’s research team got to work, remembering a tidbit that their medical research team had read in a medical journal. There was a trial that involved merging two types of medicines with a great track record of success in treating Yanky’s illness. RCCS immediately showed this protocol to Yanky’s doctor, who agreed to give it a try.

The next day, RCCS researchers read another journal, this time from an out-of-state hospital that did research on this protocol and added a third compound with an even higher track record of success. This protocol sounded very promising. Yanky’s doctor agreed. The problem? It wasn’t FDA approved yet.

A tremendous amount of research had been done on this protocol to prove its safety and efficacy, but there were no slots left in the clinical trial, and FDA approval can take years. Yanky didn’t have five years to wait for government approval. He needed this lifesaving treatment immediately.

RCCS tried to get the drug approved by insurance, and it was denied. That didn’t stop us. With strong efforts by our advocacy team, Yanky was approved for a grant from the pharmaceutical company. Yanky is now on that treatment plan, and he is doing very well.

This was a patient being treated by a top doctor in a top hospital who had never heard of the treatment RCCS’s team uncovered.

How did that happen?

RCCS is on the cutting edge of research, of chasing after every lead, and of building relationships with medical professionals worldwide who save our patients’ lives.

And we don’t just do this for Yanky. We do this for each of our 388 Lakewood patients. There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to patient care. Currently, there are over 100 known types of cancer, and each one is so specific. RCCS has a full staff of referral specialists—each immersed in a different type of cancer—staying up-to-date on the latest research so they can help every person who reaches out.

What’s included in care?

Medical referrals, financial support, insurance advocacy, transportation, help with lodgings near hospitals… The list goes on.

But RCCS’s care runs even deeper. When a patient is Rachmana l’tzlan diagnosed with cancer, they need expert guidance and an expert’s knowledge. Our medical research team—which is already comprised of dedicated, expert researchers who are backed by the highest-level medical professionals—is set to undergo a massive expansion in the coming year.

The world of medicine and science research evolves more rapidly than FDA protocol can keep up with. A medicine or treatment that will be part of all treatment protocols in five years is being discovered and researched now.We don’t have five years to wait. With patience, diligence, and experts’ eyes, our researchers cast their net, discovering and investigating every potential treatment possibility.

Because if something is available somewhere, we want our patients to have it now.

Our Lakewood budget has grown from $2.9 million last year to $3.2 million this year (that’s an increase of 10.32 percent!). Our worldwide budget is $19.5 million and covers 4,605 patients. Included in our budget is insurance advocacy and financial support for cancer patients. Whether someone needs help with finding the best insurance plan, paying their premiums, or covering co-pays, RCCS is there to make sure money doesn’t stand in the way of the best available treatment. Patients are also given a $1,000 HSA copay card to use for minor co-pays at doctors’ offices and pharmacies.

Found all your answers?

You just got a glimpse of what goes on in RCCS.

And whatever we already do is just the beginning. We’re forging ahead and raising the bar in all of our departments.

Lakewood’s cholim know where to turn for help. We need Lakewood’s support to help them.