In Arlington, when low-income uninsured patients need cancer care, they have a wonderful option: Virginia Cancer Specialists of Arlington (VCS) — winner of the 2016 Governor’s Volunteerism Award for Outstanding Small Business. Without VCS, these patients would likely not receive the cancer treatment they need, which can often cost more than $50,000 a month. Fortunately superior care is provided because VCS believes that health care for all community members is a human right and that, as members of the community, VCS is responsible for helping anyone in need, regardless of that person’s ability to pay. VCS is an outstanding partner with the Arlington Free Clinic. In the past five years alone, VCS has provided pro bono care to 160 of the Clinic’s cancer patients with the cost of many patients’ care exceeding several hundred thousands of dollars.
VCS never puts caps on the number of Free Clinic patients they will see, the number of visits patients can make, or the amount of money they’ll spend on patients’ care. Many of the Clinic’s patients have required more than 30 visits to treat their cancer, and some patients will need to see their VCS oncologists for years to come. VCS physicians participate in community groups that conduct cancer screening outreach in low-income housing complexes and churches throughout Arlington and surrounding communities. VCS’ patient care philosophy is that health care for all community members is a human right and that, as members of the community, VCS truly values all people in their community and has been a lifesaver for hundreds of people who have nowhere else to turn. They have proven that it is possible to be deeply compassionate and simultaneously thrive as a business.