History and Mission
To enhance the quality of life of those affected by cancer by providing education, information and support.
Life with Cancer was founded in 1987 at Inova Fairfax Hospital, when a man named Nando DeFilippo lost his wife to cancer. Nando and his family, in need of information and support, searched throughout the country for resources to help them understand and cope with their emotions and their changed life. Ultimately, they were disappointed by the lack of available resources. Nando was determined to create an outlet for those dealing with cancer to turn to; with education, support and information to live with a cancer diagnosis, treatment and its affects. He made a generous donation to develop a program within Inova Health System solely devoted to the support of patients and families facing cancer, planting the roots for Life with Cancer. Over the past 25 years, Life with Cancer has grown and expanded its staff base, works with a team of more than 100 volunteers, serving patients and their loved ones in each of Inova Health Systemâ€™s five hospitals, and in its 16,000 square foot Life with Cancer Family Center.
Relationship to Inova Health System
Inova has been instrumental in helping the program develop and prosper through the many excellent resources it has made available. Inova continues to be very involved in the program with two employees on the Board, and through the partnership Life with Cancer has with the medical services personnel provided by Inova’s cancer program. Additionally, all the funds raised by the Board are accounted for by the Inova Health System Foundation, which manages the funds in special accounts that are restricted to the mission of the program.