Patient Support Services

Duke Radiation Oncology is proud to offer several in-house services to help patients and their families before, during and after their radiation treatment.

Please click the links below to learn more.

Duke Cancer Center dietitians

Nutrition is an essential part of a cancer patient's treatment.  Registered Dietitians help you with making sure your body has everything it needs during your cancer journey to stay as healthy, strong and hydrated as possible.

With good nutrition, the body is better able to tolerate and recover from radiation treatments. A well nourished body and mind are invaluable and this will assist you in getting through your radiation treatment as strong as possible.

Services Provided in the Duke Cancer Center

  • Provide information on managing some of the side effects of cancer treatment.
  • Help with making sure you are eating optimally throughout your treatments and after your treatment is completed. There is a large amount of nutrition information available on the internet, through books and in the news.
  • Help you to understand and apply nutrition that works best for you, your diagnosis and your life.
  • You can schedule an appointment to meet with a Registered Dietitian that specializes in the nutrition care routinely seen with your type of cancer. Your Radiation Oncologist or primary care nurse can refer a patient to their personal Registered Dietitian. An appointment to meet with a disease specific Dietitian is scheduled through the Radiation Oncology Scheduling HUB.


Julie Hann, MS, RD, LDN, CSO (Sarcoma, GU, Heme/Lymph)
Phone: 919-668-2290

Ann Hill, MS, RD, LDN ( Thoracic, Melanoma, Brain)
Phone: 919-613-8642

Lily McWilliams, RD, LDN (GI)
Phone: 919-613-9382

Dayle Van Ess, MS, RD, LDN (Head & Neck)
Phone: 919-631-6379

Patricia Wilkes, MS, RD, LDN​ (Breast, Gyn, Endocrine)
Phone: 919-613-3688

Financial Care Counselor

This service is designed to ensure that patients receive pre-authorizations for all radiation treatment prior to their first treatment. Further, we are a resource for patients by providing information on how they can obtain financial assistance.

Services Provided in the Duke Cancer Center

  • Address patient's billing and insurance questions.
  • Call insurance companies for pre authorizations for radiation treatment.
  • Gather benefit information for patients.
  • Inform patients of critical information regarding their insurance coverage.
  • Work with in-house social worker to try and seek financial relief for patients not covered through their insurance plan by investigating various Duke sponsored programs to ease their financial burden. Duke also receives donations to help our patients pay for medical treatment.


Tasha Streater, Financial Care Counselor​

Subrina Byas, Financial Care Counselor

Tikki Vaughan, Team Leader/Financial Care Counselor

Duke Cancer Center meditation room

Oncology social workers help patients and their loved ones cope with the emotional and practical concerns that accompany the diagnosis and treatment of cancer. Individual, family and group consultations are available to both inpatients and outpatients.

Services Provided in the Duke Cancer Center

  • Psychosocial Assessments
  • Counseling
  • Safety Assessments
  • Resource-finding
  • Supportive Therapies


Gregory Bankoski, LCSW (Head & Neck, GI, Thoracic, Melanoma, Sarcoma)
Office: 919-668-6676
Pager: 919-970-2722

Tara Kenyon, LCSW (Brain Tumor)
Office: 919-688-6178
Pager: 919-970-3520

Maggie McDermott, LCSW (Brain Tumor)
Office: 919-681-1687
Pager: 919-970-2283

Terri Stong, LCSW (Breast, GYN, Endocrinology, GU, Hematology)
Office: 919-684-5259
Pager: 919-206-3993

Bethany Henshall, LCSW (Adult Bone Marrow Transplant)
Office: 919-668-1036

Maurisa Darby, LCSW (Adult Bone Marrow Transplant)
Office: 919-668-1035

Renea Valea, LCSW (Adult Bone Marrow Transplant)
Office: 919-668-4368

Therapy dog with patient

The Pets at Duke program was established in 1994 based on research support showing that visiting with a pet can reduce stress symptoms, lower blood pressure temporarily, combat feelings of isolation and even lengthen a person’s life expectancy. Since opening in early 2012, the Duke Cancer Center is pleased to offer this unique and positive experience to patients and families.

Patients with cancer are prone to depression, acute stress, feelings of isolation, anxiety, fatigue and fears of death. The psychological comorbidities of cancer negatively affect the health outcomes of patients, and must be addressed to treat patients properly, a movement supported by the Joint Commission.

Animal-assisted activity/therapy is a highly effective form of psychotherapy intervention that has been shown to:

  • Aid stress and depression reduction.
  • Provide a sense of companionship that can combat feelings of isolation.
  • Help patients to achieve relaxation and to feel connected to a canine companion in order to facilitate the patient’s healing and rehabilitation.

Therapy dog visitation is offered in designated areas of the patient waiting lobby.


Duke Cancer Patient Support Program

Kim Light, Chief Dosimetrist and Radiation Oncology Pet Therapy Coordinator


Local Resources and Services

The Department of Radiation Oncology and the Duke Cancer Institute provide access to services for both patients and families.

Caring House
Caring House provides adult cancer patients and accompanying caregivers with a comfortable, supportive and affordable place to stay during outpatient treatment at the Duke Cancer Institute.

Caring House, 2625 Pickett Road, Durham, NC 27705
(919) 490-5449

Ronald McDonald House of Durham and Wake
Built with love, the Ronald McDonald House of Durham and Wake offers a comforting “home-away-from-home” and a community of support for seriously ill children and their families.

Ronald McDonald House, 506 Alexander Avenue, Durham, NC 27705
(919) 286-9305