Posted by Fran Alexakos & Pam Ancheta
Tina Rizack, PD, MPH hematologist and oncologist  - South County Health
Dr. Tina Rizack presented some examples in answer to the question "How does an 'Interdisciplinary' approach to patient care affect outcomes?" An essential part of support in patient care is encouraging healthy eating and exercise to help cancer patients with strength and stamina so their bodies tolerate various chemotherapies and other intensive cancer treatments.  Such a regimen helps patient to maintain their weight throughout the process.  Dr. Rizack says it is more typical to gain weight, not lose it, during cancer therapies. 
Dr. Rizack mentioned how cannabis prescriptions have been clinically shown to help with symptoms of pain from the disease itself as well as relief from side effects of treatments.  The main emphasis of the presentation was about how South County Hospital's new developed and designed cancer care unit is able to sufficiently address the cancer needs of our community and region. 
Rhode Island has among the highest rates of cancer in the nation probably due to elderly population and former remnants of toxic waste left behind by decades of past 20th-century industry and manufacturing.   Below is the Q&A infomation sheet on Dr. Rizack and cancer care at South County Hospital.