NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — The spread of COVID-19 means more weeks of practicing social distancing, the CDC has warned the practice is especially important to protect those most at risk.
For this reason, and other COIVD-19 concerns, The American Cancer Society announced this week that their housing program, Hope Lodge, would be suspended beginning this Friday.
Kimberly Fielding is currently underground treatment for lung and liver cancer and shared that she had come to rely on the Hope Lodge program during her treatment.
“Everyone there understood one another, and it was a place that took away the burden of having to worry about where you’d stay,” said Fielding.
She was supposed to check-in at Nashville’s Hope Lodge on Charlotte Avenue beginning this week.
Hope Lodges across the country house cancer patients that live more than 40 miles away from their treatment facility.
The American Cancer Society told News 2’s CB Cotton that they’ve worked to find accommodations for Nashville’s current lodge guests or people like Fielding, who had upcoming plans to stay there.
Fielding said she understands the precautionary measures.
Mary Dyess said she understands too. Dyess had been staying at the Hope Lodge with her husband, John, who is battling cancer.
The couple had to leave the lodge this week.
“I mean you have people with no autoimmune system and stem cell transplants if one person got it – it could kill everyone,” said Dyess.
Fortunately, a good samaritan coordinated with the American Cancer Society to place the Dyess family in an Airbnb during John’s remaining treatment.
Fielding has been placed by the Society in a hotel until Thursday.
Moving forward, she and the Society will have to collaborate to find future places for her to stay.
Fielding shared that she no longer has a home in Nashville and will have to drive to and from a friend’s home in Illinois for her remaining treatments.
Both women shared that they hope the pandemic will end soon for the health of everyone and so the Hope Lodge can continue doing its work.
“When you go there you realize you’re not alone, it’s such a comfort. It truly is a wonderful place that The American Cancer Society provides” said Dyess.
“I appreciated the warmth and kindness we found at the Hope Lodge.”
To help Fielding with lodging expenses for her remaining treatments you can give to her GoFundMe page here.
To read The American Cancer Society’s full statement on the suspension of the Hope Lodge program see here.
Stay with News 2 for continuing coverage of the COVID-19 Pandemic.