Far Hills Race Meeting Association Donates $100,000 to Support Cancer Patients

Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital (RWJUH) Somerset, an RWJBarnabas Health facility, has received a $100,000 donation from the Far Hills Race Meeting Association to support the needs of cancer patients at the Steeplechase Cancer Center, including transportation, recovery items and living expenses.

The Far Hills Race Meeting Association donation through the Somerset Health Care Foundation, the hospital’s fundraising arm, will enable RWJUH Somerset to continue to provide Steeplechase Cancer Center patients with comprehensive cancer treatment within a calm, compassionate and patient-focused environment while providing solutions for the unique challenges cancer patients face.

Funds will be used to arrange for transportation for cancer patients to get to and from the Steeplechase Cancer Center for their medical appointments.

“Patients often need to come to the cancer center several times a week during the course of their treatment and in many cases, they don’t feel well enough to drive themselves. It can be difficult to arrange for transportation from family and friends and they simply may not be able to afford to pay for transportation, which can prevent them from receiving the care that they need,” said Ron Kennedy, Chairman of the Far Hills Race Meeting Association. “The Far Hills Race Meeting Association is committed to improving healthcare in the surrounding community and investing in Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Somerset allows us to expand access to and enhance the delivery of quality care to more people.”

Additional funds from the Far Hills Race Meeting Association donation will go toward other supportive needs for cancer patients, including financial assistance for wigs and prostheses offered at the cancer center’s Sanofi US Wellness Boutique; groceries; medications; house cleaning services and other living expenses.

“Many patients may find themselves struggling to afford everyday living expenses because of their unexpected medical costs following a diagnosis of cancer,” said Kathleen C. Toomey, MD, Medical Director of the Steeplechase Cancer Center. “This added stress can have a negative impact on their overall health and wellness while they are receiving treatment. We are now not only able to offer programs encompassing wellness, prevention and survivorship initiatives, but we’re able to provide support for the basic needs of patients.”

The Far Hills Race Meeting Association has a long history of fundraising for RWJUH Somerset supporting the critical health and wellness needs of the community. Since the 1950s, the proceeds from the Far Hills Race event - more than $18 million to date – have benefited the hospital, greatly impacting its growth and ability to offer comprehensive, state-of-the-art medical services to New Jersey residents. The Steeplechase Cancer Center, which opened in 2007, is named in honor of the Far Hills Race Meeting Association, the hospital’s most generous benefactor.

“Expanding the resources and support services available through the Steeplechase Cancer Center adds another dimension to the care we can offer to our patients,” said Tony Cava, President, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Somerset. “The donation from the Far Hills Race Meeting Association helps us to truly provide the full continuum of care that patients need through every step of their cancer journey.”

The Steeplechase Cancer Center enables central New Jersey cancer patients to see their doctors, undergo outpatient treatment and participate in promising cancer research studies – all in one place close to home. The three-story, 63,000-square-foot facility houses radiation therapy services, infusion therapy, breast imaging services, a lung cancer screening program, PET/CT imaging services, the hospital’s research team, oncologists’ and surgeons’ offices, nutritional counseling, patient navigator services, a patient resource library, the Sanofi US Wellness Boutique and complementary medicine services, such as yoga, t’ai chi, meditation and massage. As an affiliate of Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, The Steeplechase Cancer Center offers patients the unique opportunity to receive care from the research physicians of CINJ in the state-of-the-art environment of RWJUH Somerset.

The Sanofi US Breast Care Program is one of only a select few in New Jersey to achieve full accreditation by the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers and has also been named a Breast Imaging Center of Excellence by the American College of Radiology.

The Steeplechase Cancer Center is nationally accredited by the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons, demonstrating its commitment to meet the highest standards for comprehensive, high-quality, multidisciplinary patient-centered care.