On Wednesday, First Lady Casey DeSantis announced the launch of Florida Cancer Connect, an online resource site for cancer patients to hear from survivors and access information to help navigate the dizzying realities of battling cancer.
At a press conference at the Ackerman Cancer Center in Jacksonville, she noted that while some cancer-focused non-profits are “doing great things,” the new Florida site will provide a statewide outlook on resources that can help people through their cancer journeys.
“It literally is an all-encompassing resource that has everything for prevention and research resources, treatment and provider locations — how to navigate coverage when you’re dealing with insurance, what’s covered, what’s not covered. ‘How do I dispute this?’ ‘How do I interpret the bill?'” Ms. DeSantis said.
The First Lady and Gov. Ron DeSantis have been providing updates on her journey through her breast cancer diagnosis and treatment since the announcement of her diagnosis in early October 2021. In March, the governor announced that his wife was considered “cancer free.”
Ms. DeSantis teased the cancer initiative a few months back, when she indicated that she was working on a project that involved sharing the stories of other cancer patients and survivors.
“And this is a big point for me — there’s stories of survival and hope,” DeSantis said at the press conference. “They’re inputting their stories of survival into this website. And so, people across the state can then log on, see what type of cancer they have, they can see other people who have battled those same types of cancers and get stories of inspiration.”
She was joined by a handful of other cancer survivors who described their experiences with diagnosis, treatment and recovery.
The resource site is live now, with specific information for breast, prostate, lung, colon and rectal, and pediatric cancers. The site also provides resources for “caregivers” of cancer patients — meaning the people in their lives that are directly helping the patient through treatment.
Ms. DeSantis noted that they’re looking for input for additional helpful resources for the “day-to-day” struggles of battling cancer, such as where to buy a wig or helpful items for surgery.