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The 2013 John Theurer Cancer Center (JTCC) Award was presented to Governor Chris Christie at a ceremony at Hackensack University Medical Center on July 2.
The honor was given to the governor because of his commitment in the prevention and treatment of cancer as well as his commitment to the medical field such as the recent merge of Rutgers University and the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and his commitment to research in the field. Christie toured the cancer center and met with patients and staff prior to the ceremony.
According to Robert Garrett, president and CEO of Hackensack University Health Network, JTCC is the only hospital in New Jersey to be among the top 50 Centers according to U.S. News and World Report. It is also one of the largest volume hospitals in the U.S. ranked in the top ten. The center is focused on a holistic approach to cancer treatment using every tool to treat and prevent cancer.
Christie wore a blue bracelet given to him by the parents of a 22-year old cancer patient who had recently lost her battle with cancer. The band said “Sweet Caroline” in memory of that patient. He also spoke about his mother’s struggle with cancer and one of the nurses who had cared for her at St. Barnabas Hospital. He emphasized the care that hospitals offer, not only to the patient, but also to the family who is going through the trauma as well. Christie accepted the honor, not only for himself, but for all of the people who dedicate themselves to care for the patients and families going through the ordeal of cancer.