MONTPELIER — The Vermont Cancer Survivor Network will host a daylong event focused on community education around complementary and integrative medicine in cancer care and survivorship. The event, co-sponsored by The National Life Cancer Center and Healing Arts and writing will take place April 2 at the Vermont College of Fine Arts in Montpelier. The event is open to the general public.
Nationally, the demand for a more integrative approach to cancer care and survivorship is growing, and more research showing the benefits of complementary medicine modalities is available. The event aims to introduce participants, who will include cancer survivors, family members and caregivers, medical practitioners, as well as the general public, to the variety of complementary medicine services available here in Vermont. Integrative medicine involves bringing conventional and complementary approaches together in a coordinated way. Through generous support from sponsors, this free event will provide information to the community to help inform patients and providers about the available modalities of complementary and integrative medicine, how they integrate with standard medical care, and their benefits and risks. Patients use complementary medicine services to help with side effects, support the immune system, relieve stress and feel better overall. Gabriel Cole, who underwent extensive surgery, chemotherapy and radiation treatment for cancer, valued the complementary medicine services he received at UVM Health Network-Central Vermont Medical Center.
“It was comforting to know that not every visit would be for difficult and sometimes painful treatment. Acupuncture, reiki and massage were extremely relaxing and enjoyable. They helped me greatly in dealing with the stress of cancer and treatment.” Amy Littlefield, ND, MSOM, FABNO, of Vermont Wellness Medicine and Integrative Oncology in Middlebury will be a featured keynote speaker for the event. Littlefield brings a unique perspective to the field as one of only four oncology-certified naturopathic physicians in New England. She works with patients and oncology teams to bridge the gap between high-quality conventional medical care and naturopathic medicine. The day will also offer a variety of workshops and hands-on demonstrations provided by physicians, acupuncturists, herbalists, nutritionists, yoga practitioners, aromatherapists, reiki practitioners, body workers and more. A resource fair with exhibitors will be open throughout the day. Registration will begin at 8:30 a.m. and parking is free. Participants are welcome to bring their own lunches or to dine in one of Montpelier’s many restaurants. The Vermont Cancer Survivor Network is a 501(c)(3), not-for-profit organization founded by cancer survivors to improve the quality of life for anyone living with, through or beyond cancer and their caregiver.
Among the programs it operates is Kindred Connections, which provides one-to-one peer support for newly diagnosed cancer patients. For more information about the event, or to register, visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/expanding-cancercare-exploring-choices-in-complementary-integrative-medicine-tickets-20501715182.