Recognizing Excellence in Radiation Therapy: Jessica Ruark
November 12, 2020
In recognition of National Radiologic Technology Week, we are highlighting Jessica Ruark from GenesisCare. Jessica has been a radiation therapist for five years and is passionate about patient care. In our discussion with Jessica, she emphasized the importance of the service community, which is vital for a therapist to achieve patient success. Jessica has been personally affected by cancer within her family. Her exposure to cancer actually served as a life changing impact on her career direction. At the time, Jessica was studying pre-nursing, but decided to change course. The radiation therapists and chemo nurses that cared for her uncle stood out to her. "Seeing the difference those individuals had in my uncle's journey is what inspired me to take on this role and develop my own bond with patients."
Cancer catches people at their most vulnerable state. They need to have trust in those around them that they are receiving the best care possible for their diagnosis. This care is delivered by a tight-knit community working together with the same goal – a successful treatment experience and outcome. Core to this is the relationship between the Therapist – Physics – Service Provider team. Therapists are the frontline and direct interface with the patient during treatments.
Physicists ensure the equipment is in an optimal state for clinical use. Service works alongside the Therapist and Physics team to ensure the equipment is available for clinical use when it is needed. Strong communications, acting together with urgency, and creating an environment of collaboration are some of the ways Jessica has seen success within this team. For example, "With our engineer, in particular, the quickness and how he responds to our team is just phenomenal; he is always so positive and comes into the building being so helpful. It's nice and refreshing to have an engineer be like that with you."
The theme of this year's National Radiologic Technology Week is "Building on our history, creating a future." How does this quote motivate and inspire you looking forward?
"In our world, everything seems like it's changing. I feel like there are so many things that are old fashioned, not just in healthcare and technology, but also in how we address patients and treat them. I feel that our whole culture is changing, and I'm excited to see how we incorporate everybody into that. No exclusions."
Jessica, your commitment to your patients and work is impressive! We sincerely appreciate all you do for cancer patients and for your willingness to share your insights with us this week.
RSA is a privately-owned company founded in 1995 and based in North Carolina. They are an ISO 9001:2015 Certified independent service provider for radiotherapy equipment, most notably external beam linear accelerators (Varian, Elekta, Siemens). For over 25-years, RSA has supported the oncology community by delivering responsive, personable, and proactive service to help clients deliver their best care. Learn more about their company, their culture, and their services at www.rsa-inc.com. We look forward to meeting you!