The Huff Project Donates $35K to Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center

Huff Project
photo from The Huff Project

For the second year in a row, The Huff Project has made a sizable donation to the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center. The Williamson County nonprofit’s gift of $35,000 will help fund a Lung Cancer Education Tool that will enable a patient to access individualized information about his or her diagnosis, recommended treatment and treatment team on a phone or computer after he or she has had a clinic visit.

Erin Gillaspie, MD, MPH, at Vanderbilt University Medical Center is the Principal Investigator leading the development of the Vanderbilt Lung Cancer Education Tool. Studies show that most patients can only remember 60 to 80 percent of what they hear in a clinic visit, and 50 percent of the information remembered is inaccurate. The Tool will be available as both a webpage and an app that can be downloaded to a smartphone. The individualized content will be easy to understand, patient-friendly, easy to navigate and easy to find, with the ability to bookmark information. 

“When you first receive the news of a cancer diagnosis, your whole world stops,” said Stephen Huff, a Williamson County native who was diagnosed with inoperable stage 4 non-small cell lung cancer caused by a rare genetic mutation at age 29. “All of the information about treatment possibilities and outcomes is overwhelming and it is impossible to accurately remember everything you’re being told. The Lung Cancer Education Tool is intended to empower patients with knowledge about their diagnosis that they can easily refer back to and their physicians can update after each visit. It’s an incredible concept that we are so proud to support.”

“What a genuine honor and privilege it was to have my project selected to receive The Huff Project funds to help support the development of a lung cancer patient education app,” Gillaspie said. “The app will provide each of our patients with tailored content specific to their type of cancer, stage and treatment recommendations as well as to enhance access to available support resources. My hope is that this app will allow us to continue to empower our patients and to help support them every step of the way.”

A nonsmoker and former professional athlete, Huff founded The Huff Project with his wife, Emily, in 2018 in an effort to eliminate the stigma of the disease and raise money to fund research that will help others in the future. In 2019, The Huff Project donated $25,000 to a research initiative aimed at improving outcomes for patients by improving lung cancer diagnostics and preventing unnecessary, expensive and potentially harmful tests. To learn more about The Huff Project, including donation and fundraising opportunities, go to www.thehuffproject.org.

About Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center

Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center is a leader in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer. The center’s world-renowned team of experts provides an integrated, personalized and patient-centered approach to cancer care, including treatment, research, support, education and outreach. Vanderbilt-Ingram is a National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center, one of just two centers in Tennessee and 51 in the country to earn this highest distinction. As a nonprofit organization,Vanderbilt-Ingram relies on philanthropic support to advance its mission. Located in Nashville,Tennessee, our center lies in the “buckle” of the “cancer belt” – seven contiguous states with the nation’s highest death rates from cancer. Our job is not done until those statistics are changed. For more information, visit vicc.org.

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