The Wig Room
The JMD Wig Room was opened in 2009. It was the first program that the JMD established to fill a glaring need for a substantial number of women that undergo chemotherapy treatment. The JMD provides each Wig Room visitor with one wig, scarf, and cap at no cost to them regardless of where they are being treated.
Throughout the week, the Wig Room is staffed by compassionate and caring JMD volunteers. These dedicated volunteers have assisted hundreds of women select wigs, answer wig care and styling questions.
If an individual is unable to visit the Wig Room during its posted hours, a call can be made to either Flo Matta at 412-466-7460 or Mary Jane Keller at 412-672-7696 to schedule a private appointment.
To further enhance the JMD Wig Room services, in February of 2013, the JMD entered into a partnership agreement with the American Cancer Society to broaden our patient offerings of wig styles and related supplies.
Nutritional Supplement Program
After the 2014 JMD Wheels of Hope Bike Ride/Walk, the proceeds from this event were used to launch the widely acclaimed JMD Nutritional Supplement Program. The JMD developed this program in conjunction with clinic staff due to the critical importance of patient nutrition throughout treatment. The JMD also understands that each patient responds to cancer treatments differently. Some patients can maintain their lifestyle/nutritional intake uninterrupted while others must modify their diets considerably and often are unable to tolerate most foods. To date, this JMD program has provided a staggering 23,500+ units of Ensure or Glucerna to hundreds of needy patients that visit the clinic for chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
Colonoscopy Prep Patient Support Program
Colon cancer is the most preventable type of cancer. Through participating in colon screening exams, pre-cancerous polyps can be removed and, if necessary, more frequent exams can be scheduled for those considered to be at high risk. In 2015, it was brought to the attention of the JMD by UPMC McKeesport Center for Digestive Disorders that previously scheduled patients canceled their exams due to their inability to afford colonoscopy prep supplies. Now, through the enactment of this program, these patients are notified that there is help to cover the cost of these products. The JMD now provides these prep supplies to needy patients through an arrangement with the UPMC Outpatient Pharmacy. The JMD knows that continuing to support this program will save lives.
JMD Cancer Resource Library
The JMD believes that it is important to have helpful educational materials onsite. We believe that this type of information will be empowering for patients and caregivers. The JMD Cancer Resource Center is in the process of accumulating disease specific and cancer prevention materials, as well as children's books explaining cancer. This JMD Cancer Resource Library will be located across from its main office on level D Mansfield and is slated to open during the winter months of 2017. Please visit our web site for more updates regarding its opening and hours of operation.
Prior to September of 2012, women that came to the UPMC McKeesport Cancer Center for radiotherapy often continued through treatment exposed from the waist-up. The reality of the situation created an unacceptable level of vulnerability in these women as well as increasing their level of stress, which for obvious reasons, was acutely high. Wearing a Dignity Robe means that only the area being treated has to be exposed.
The need for Dignity Robes was acted upon by the JMD shortly after the opening of its cancer resource center. During 2012 and beyond, outreach efforts originating from the JMD Cancer Resource Center were successful in engaging a sewing studio, church groups, and at-large community volunteers to donate their time to create these visually appealing and comfortable garments for these patients. From the first date in 2012 that the JMD delivered its first Dignity Robes to the Radiation Oncology Department at UPMC McKeesport, no woman has been treated without one. These Dignity Robes are also theirs to keep. This is why it is imperative for the JMD to actively fundraise to purchase the necessary fabric and supplies and to maintain a small army of dedicated volunteers to sew these robes for our appreciative clinic patients.
Through meeting with cancer patients and caregivers in the JMD Cancer Resource office it was evident that often clinic patients were not offered dietary consults. In early 2013, the JMD Director of patient and Community Services initiated meetings with the UPMC Dietary Department and shortly thereafter an administrative process was put into place so that the vast majority of new clinic patients are scheduled for dietary consults shortly after they start treatment. These patients are also provided with healthy eating booklets that provide recipe ideas and other helpful nutritional tips.
For far too many years, Mon Valley residents diagnosed with cancer lacked this valuable resource. Mon Valley cancer patients and/or their caregivers had few options if they wanted to join a support group. They could either participate with online groups or travel to meeting sites located in the South Hills or Pittsburgh. To address this need, the JMD is teaming with Community Life to offer a support group format that will provide emotional support as well as an educational component. It is hoped that the initial support group monthly meeting will be held in the upcoming months. These meetings are slated to be held during daylight hours. Refreshments will be provided and transportation arrangements can be made for those interested in participating but lack the means of getting to the Community Life McKeesport location.