Dana-Farber and Harvard Street Neighborhood Health Center to connect patients to cancer services

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Street Neighborhood Health Center (HSNHC) in Dorchester, MA, have entered into an agreement to connect patients to cancer prevention, education, diagnosis, and treatment services.

This program, based out of Dana-Farber’s Cancer Care Equity Program, will help address persistent health care disparities faced in local communities. The practice of embedding a medical oncology practice in the community has shown early positive results with shortened wait times for care.

The clinic will initially be held bi-weekly and could be expanded based on demand. It will be led by Christopher Lathan, MD, Ludmila Svoboda, RN, and Laura Garber, PA. Svoboda will also serve as a nurse navigator, helping reduce language, cultural and other barriers for patients so they can receive needed care.

The Dana-Farber care team will see patients who have cancer symptoms and are referred by HSNHC primary care physicians, ob-gyns, dentists and other providers. They will also provide follow-up care for patients who have received a previous cancer diagnosis or who are at higher risk of cancer from smoking or other causes.

“We are very pleased to be partnering with Harvard Street Neighborhood Health. This collaboration is very much aligned with our ongoing work to reduce disparities in cancer outcomes to vulnerable patients locally, said Christopher Lathan, MD, associate medical director, Dana-Farber Network and senior network physician. “This initiative will help streamline diagnosis, treatment, and education of underserved patients with suspected malignancy in the Dorchester community.”

“Harvard Street is very excited about the partnership with Dana Farber’s Cancer Care Equity Program (CCEP’s),” said Stan McLaren, president and CEO of HSNHC. This program will broaden CCEP’s entree to vulnerable patients, and allowing our patients with limited access and resources – the highest quality cancer screening and care.”

Dana-Farber works with other community health centers in the greater Boston area, to expand access and care opportunities.

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