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Monday, September 19, 2016

Travel Assistance Program: Re-Opening Today!



The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's  (LLS) Susan Lang Pay-it-Forward Patient Travel Assistance program will reopen on Monday, September 19, 2016 at 12PM EST. 

LLS recently received funding specifically for pediatric patients defined as “children and adolescents 19 years of age or below at the time of application”.  The pediatric fund is limited and is expected to fill quickly.  Once these allotments are filled, patients may apply to the general fund for assistance.  

Qualifying patients can only receive travel assistance once per fiscal year.

Available Funding
General Fund – provides assistance for patients with all blood cancers
Pediatric Fund (limited) –provides assistance for children and adolescents (19 years of age or below at time of application) with all blood cancers.

Patient Eligibility
Patient eligibility criteria for travel assistance:

·         Applicants (patients) must be US citizens or permanent residents which is verified by applicant’s physical address; and
·         Applicants must have a confirmed diagnosis of blood cancer; and
·         Applicants may be insured or uninsured; and
·         Applicants must meet financial eligibility criteria defined as an annual income at or below 500% of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL)  

A one-time grant of $500 is available for qualified patients per year:

·         Awards are limited to one per patient, per year; and
·         Awards are based upon a first-come first-serve basis; and
·         The program will be offered for as long as funding is available; and
·         Award is distributed via the Susan Lang Pay-it-Forward patient travel assistance credit card


Approved Travel Expenses: ground transportation, tolls, gas, parking, car rental, air transportation, lodging, and ambulance services.

Expenses NOT Covered: food, drinks and alcoholic beverages, tobacco products, automotive parts/supplies and repair, auto dealers, travel agencies, baggage fees, and international travel.

How to Apply

Patients can apply via the online portal at www.lls.org/travel or by calling ourtoll free number: 844-565-2269. 

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

September is Blood Cancer Awareness Month



Looking to get involved with The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) during Blood Cancer Awareness Month?  Below you will find all of the upcoming events that you can get involved with this month.  Also, several North Texas businesses and organizations have created opportunities for you to shop and give back to LLS at the same time.  Check out our retail and third party partners, please visit them and thank them for helping to create a world without blood cancers.  


Country mega star Marina McBride and friends are coming to Dallas for the Band Against Cancer - The Sarah Cannon Tour to benefit The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. The concert is scheduled for Friday, September 16th. The concert is part of a national movement to connect those facing cancer with community-based resources and support close to home. Purchase your tickets online


Mark your calendars for Giving Day 2016
Thursday, September 22, from 6 AM Central – Midnight.

North Texas Giving Day is an online giving event for people across the nation (and the world!) to come together to raise as much money as possible for North Texas nonprofits on one day: September 22, 2016.  In seven years, North Texas Giving Day has pumped more than $119 million into the North Texas community. 



A number of local businesses are selling paper balloons at the register to benefit the North Texas Light The Night campaign.  These national partners raise hundreds of thousands of dollars every year to further the LLS mission. Below is a list of the participating retailers:


Burlington Coat Factory
Great American Cookies
Marble Slab Creamery
Pretzelmaker
Hot Dog on a Stick

Thursday, September 8, 2016

NTX Blood Cancer Conference: What You Need to Know


The 11th Annual North Texas Blood Cancer Conference and the Inaugural North Texas Cancer Expo are almost here!  When making your plans for this weekend, here are some things you should keep in mind:

When does registration close?
Online Registration 
Online registration for both the NTX Blood Cancer Conference and the NTX Cancer Expo closes at 11:59 p.m. on Thursday, September 8th.  Attendees can register online until then at www.ntxbloodcancerconference.org or www.ntxcancerexpo.org. 
On Site Registration 
If attendees do not register online before Friday, registration will open at the NTX Blood Cancer Conference at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday, September 10th.  Registration will be open all day Saturday.

Where do I park?
There is ample parking available at the Sheraton Hotel.  Conference attendees will be responsible for paying for their own parking.  Attendees can also take public transportation to the event.  DART has a drop off location near the hotel.

How do I get my CEUs?
In order to receive the 4.0 free CEU credits from LLS, health care professionals must turn in their evaluation at the registration table AFTER the closing session.  Any evaluations completed and turned in then will not be eligible for the CEUs.  Proof of CEU credits will be emailed AFTER the conference.  Any questions should be addressed to Seetha Modi. 

Will there be any down time?
Not if you don't want there to be!  The NTX Cancer Expo has a full docket of entertainment planned on the main stage (full schedule here) as well as 50+ booths and the LLS World to visit.  

Is there a formal kick-off?
Yes!  The ribbon cutting for the NTX Cancer Expo will take place at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, September 9th.  This is open to the public and attendees will have access to all of the vendors.  Come early to avoid the crowds on Saturday!

Wait, I have more questions.Visit www.ntxbloodcancerconference.org for additional information about the conference and what you can expect and visit www.ntxcancerexpo.org for details about the expo.



Tuesday, August 23, 2016

NTX Blood Cancer Conference: Pediatric-Focused Sessions


BACK BY POPULAR DEMAND: The North Texas Blood Cancer Conference is pleased to re-introduce a number of pediatric-focused elements to the break-out session line-up.  These sessions are filling quickly so do not delay in securing your seat in one of these sessions:

Too Young for This: Talking to Children about Cancer
Caitlin Arndt, CCLS, Children's Health
9:45 a.m. - 10:25 a.m. Session

A Zone of Our Own: Adolescent & Young Adult Panel Discussion
Fort Worth Adolescent & Young Adult Oncology Council
10:30 a.m. - 11:10 a.m. Session

What's New in Pediatric Blood Cancers?
Paul Bowman, M.D., Cook Children's Medical Center

11:15 a.m. - 12:25 p.m. Session

Why, Mommy?  Parenting a Child With Cancer
Brittany Blake, M.S., CCLS, Medical City Children's Hospital
2:45 p.m. - 3:25 p.m. Session


The North Texas Cancer Expo is also hosting a number of events designed for children, including a kid zone, arts and craft area and a pet therapy center.



Tuesday, August 16, 2016

NTX Blood Cancer Conference: Healthy Eating and Treatment Success



Living Your Best Life is the focus of both the North Texas Blood Cancer Conference & NTX Cancer Expo in three weeks.  A number of studies indicate that what a person eats during and after their cancer treatment can impact how successfully they respond.  The conference and expo will both feature demonstrations and break-out sessions about how to eat healthier.

As a taste of what’s to come, here are ten tips for healthy eating throughout your cancer journey:
  • Although blood cancer is, based on current research, unpreventable, this does not mean you should stray from a healthy diet. Throughout treatment and recovery, your nutritional needs will increase, so it is imperative that you meet them.
  • Always speak with your general practitioner, dietician, or another qualified medical professional first, as they will know what is best for you as an individual. Consider referencing this guide once you begin this conversation and throughout your treatment, should you develop eating issues.
  •  Take this as an opportunity to explore new sources of essential nutrients, such as bean-based tofu as another source of protein or quinoa to gain more fiber. Additionally, don’t be afraid to try modified recipes that supply the nutrients while adhering to your new dietary limitations.
  • With the previous step in mind, determine any food intolerances, new or old, and plan your diet before you begin treatment. Having a well-stocked pantry before treatment begins eliminates the stress of shopping when you simply cannot.
  • Avoid any potential for food contamination. Store and cook meals properly, and avoid any foods that cause infection. If it could make you sick when you were healthy, avoid it during treatment.
  • During treatment, you must maintain a healthy weight. Drastic weight loss implies malnutrition. Keep your weight even or gain it back through the following healthy means.
  • Chemotherapy has been known to drastically change your appetite. This can vary, as you may develop unusual cravings or find even your favorite foods have an unpleasant taste. Consider using the following adjustments if the flavor is slightly off or if the food simply tastes wrong.
  • The inability to eat during treatment is common. However, remain hydrated and ingest what you can to get the extra calories and protein you need.
  • If you do not develop eating issues, this does not mean your treatment is not working. Eating difficulties affect some patients but not others, as it varies on a case-to-case basis.
  • Once you are in remission, if your diet was limited during treatment, continue healthy eating but try to vary it as you adhere to your doctor’s nutritional advice. Learn where your tastes and food preferences are now in comparison to where they were before treatment.
Seats in the healthy eating session are filling very quickly.  If you would like to save your seat, register today at www.ntxbloodcancerconference.org




Thursday, August 11, 2016

Team 5 Alive: The Decision to Fight

David Nesbit during treatment.
Team 5 Alive is on its way to raising $250,000 for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) through a full year of fundraising with Team In Training (TNT).  David Nesbit, the team's honored hero and inspiration, thinks back to his days in treatment and how it motivates him now.

"Six years ago, August 2010; I was enjoying the summer like everyone else.  I wasn't thinking much about my leukemia because the wait-and-watch period which I was in simply was not that bad.  My body was doing a good job of keeping my levels in check naturally.  Every month since I was diagnosed in 2009 became a little easier mentally.  Maybe, I get to do that wait and watch thing for years, I would tell myself.  I started to talk about it more freely, my confidence was building, and I didn't feel like a sick person.  That summer, I was training with TNT for my second event, had gotten healthier, shed some pounds...life was OK.  Then, in August, my cancer turned aggressive. 

In a matter of days I was having excruciating neck pains, little bumps were popping up under my skin, extreme fatigue, and night sweats.  I got scared, again.  That same pitted deep in the gut feeling of mortality was poking its ugly head up again in my mind.  Now it seemed real.  

People die from leukemia, what if it takes me?  
What if chemo ravages my body and I can't be present for my family or I can't work? 
What if I lose my hair?" (I was really worried about that!). 

After a couple of days of processing these kinds of questions, I remember asking myself, 'David, what are YOU going to do about it?' And just like that, I decided to fight.

It was very much like a boxing match.  Chemo was coming.  And every round of chemo was a round in the ring.  I could go on the defensive and take the blows and just try to get through. Or, I could fight back.  I chose to fight back.  Everything that chemo and leukemia would want to do with my body, I would do the opposite.  If I felt nauseous, I would still go to work. If I felt tired, I would spend more time with my girlfriend (who is now my wife, Kelly Nesbit!) and family, and push through.  Many times immediately after chemo treatment, I would go running.   I was going to show leukemia and chemo who was boss of this body.  Me.   

That part of my journey reminds me constantly of our amazing Team 5 Alive.  They push through, they don't stop.  Summer is a tough time to train and fundraise.  The heat and humidity right now is simply awful to run in.  There are vacations, kids off school, etc.  There are so many things that can distract.  But somehow, every week we see the Team fundraising total going up.  And every Saturday morning I see Facebook and Instagram flooded with selfies and team pictures of our Team out training in the heat.  They don't stop.  They don't give up.  Team 5 Alive is relentless.  I have a TNT shirt that has the word 'relentless' in big red letters on the front. It reminds me of our Team. That is my favorite word to describe our Team 5 Alive: Relentless.

Oh, and I never lost my hair.  Go Team!" 

________________________________________________________________________________



Kelly and David Nesbit are the co-team captain of Team Five Alive.  The Nesbits and their teammates will be posting monly as they work to raise $250,000 for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society in honor of  David's fight.  

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

North Texas Cancer Expo: Main Stage Schedule Released



 JUST RELEASED: MAIN STAGE SCHEDULE

The Inaugural North Texas Cancer Expo on September 9-10th at the Sheraton Hotel in Dallas will feature 30+ vendors and a main stage with a number of demonstrations and sessions  The expo's theme "Living Your Best Life" focuses on how patients and survivors of ALL cancer types can take steps to improve their lives during and after treatment.  

Expo attendees are welcome to stay the whole day or just drop in for part of the day.  The event is free but registration is required.

 Friday, September 9th
3:30 p.m. - Music by Rhett Butler, LLS Patient Navigator
4:00 p.m. - Health Through Juicing, Chris Devero
4:45 p.m. - Laughter Yoga, Presenter to be Announced
5:30 p.m. - Official North Texas Cancer Expo Ribbon Cutting

 Saturday, September 10th
8:30 a.m. -   Chair Yoga, Chelsey Charbeneau, Mastermind
9:30 a.m. -   Health Through Juicing, Chris Devero
10:30 a.m. - Dental Health During and After Treatment, Garrett S. Nelson, DDS
11:30 a.m. - Cooking Demonstration, Katherine Lawrence, Food Saved Me
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2:30 p.m. - Nutrition & Plant-Based Cooking, Dr. James & Andrea Conway 
1:30 p.m. -   Practicing Mindfulness, Mari Woodlief, Mastermind
2:30 p.m. -   Finish Your Race, Don Armstrong, Author and AML Survivor
3:00 p.m. -   Music by Rhett Butler, LLS Patient Navigator

The North Texas Chapter of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society is organizing this event and it runs concurrently to its North Texas Blood Cancer Conference.  



Register today to attend this action-packed event:
www.ntxcancerexpo.org