GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Childhood cancer has not taken a break during the COVID-19 pandemic with oncologists at Helen DeVos Children's Hospital remaining busy throughout the last several months.
While some hospitals were forced to stop clinical trials to focus on treating COVID patients, Helen DeVos has been able to continue clinical trials. A new grant of $50,000 will allow them to continue that type of medical research. The grant was given by St. Baldrick's Foundation to more than a dozen hospitals across the country.
"Clinical trials have really become the standard of care for children with cancer so the great majority of our children, whenever possible get enrolled in one of these national cooperative group trials because it means that they have access to the most current, most promising, cutting edge therapy that's available anywhere in the United States," said Dr. Fahner, Division Chief for Pediatric Oncology at Helen DeVos Children's Hospital.
The grant is considered an infrastructure grant, which will support staff and other resources to conduct clinical trials for children in West Michigan.
"It’s a lifesaver for our children and families because they don't have to leave the security and the comforts of their home and their home community and the support of our children's hospital because they're able to get these national clinical trials right here at home," said Dr. Fahner.
Helen DeVos is part of the Children's Oncology Group, the oldest and largest international consortium of children's hospital that continue to make clinical trails available.