Hospital receives $500K grant to help transform colorectal care in Marion County

Published: Nov. 21, 2023 at 4:22 PM EST|Updated: Nov. 21, 2023 at 5:50 PM EST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

MARION COUNTY, S.C. (WMBF) – A major grant will help one hospital catch colorectal cancer in its patients before it’s too late.

MUSC Health Marion Medical Center received a $500,000 grant from the Marion County Healthcare Foundation on Tuesday.

The grant will help fund state-of-the-art screening technology along with a nurse navigator for the medical center.

Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in South Carolina, and it disproportionately affects the Black community which makes up over 55% of the population of Marion County.

MUSC Health works to educate the community on early detection, but this new technology will be an extra tool to help save lives.

“Early detection is key. Colorectal cancer is 100% preventable when it’s caught early,” said Shametra Myers, executive director of MUSC Health Marion Medical Center. “Unfortunately, 37.5% of all cancers in Marion County are diagnosed in the late stage. That’s a huge problem that this grant will help us address.”

Meanwhile, the nurse navigator will work directly with patients to resolve issues that might prevent them from keeping an appointment to be screened or treated for colorectal cancer.

“Some patients may not be able to miss work for a doctor’s appointment,” said Dr. Rami Zebian, chief medical officer for MUSC Health Florence/Marion/Black River Medical Centers. “They may not have insurance or child care or transportation or speak English. These are just a few examples of barriers to care that our new nurse navigator can help patients navigate. We are grateful to the Marion County Healthcare Foundation for this investment, which will allow us to transform care for colorectal cancer patients in Marion County.”

In recognition of the grant, the medical center’s atrium has been renamed in honor of the Marion County Healthcare Foundation.