When Institute Trustee Beth Terrana attended her first Dana-Farber event, it sparked her drive to advocate for cancer medicine and initiated her decades-long involvement with Dana-Farber. Since then, her resolve to support the Institute’s mission has only grown.
“I was so incredibly impressed by the dedication, passion, and commitment of all the clinicians and researchers I met, that I vowed to help them achieve their goals in any way possible,” said Terrana. Today, she is helping to lead The Dana-Farber Campaign as a member of the Campaign Cabinet.
Her recent campaign gift of $500,000 established the Terrana Family Fund for Clinical Access and Patient Navigation to support the Cancer Care Equity Program (CCEP). Under the direction of Christopher Lathan, MD, MPH, chief clinical access and equity officer and faculty director of the CCEP, in collaboration with Magnolia Contreras, vice president, Community Health, this gift will develop and implement a community-facing patient navigation program to increase community access to cancer care.
Patient navigation is a well-established intervention, removing barriers to care through financial assistance, transportation, childcare, and translation services. Navigators are typically from or familiar with the cultural communities of the patients they support—vital for building trust with patients and families.
“We want to increase access and broaden our presence,” said Lathan. “It’s important to ensure patients feel they are in the right place—that they can look around, feel comfortable, see others who look like them—because they are in the right place.”
Terrana’s fund has enabled the hiring of a patient navigator for the Gastrointestinal Oncology Center, one of Dana-Farber’s highest volume clinics, and a program manager to coordinate operations. The number of people under age 50 diagnosed with colorectal cancer is alarmingly increasing and according to the American Cancer Society, disproportionately affects Black Americans who are 20% more likely to develop it and 40% more likely to die from it than other racial or ethnic groups.
The Terrana Family Fund is amplified by her $100,000 contribution to the Trustee Annual Fund and $1.45 million bequest, securing membership in the Dana- Farber Society. Her family’s comprehensive philanthropic investment in the Institute supports key priorities of The Dana-Farber Campaign: Revolutionary Science, Extraordinary Care, Exceptional Expertise, and Essential Opportunities.