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Oncology Clinical Research

Oncology Clinical Research

The Oncology Clinical Research Department under the direction of Dr. Anna Sobol strives to offer opportunities for our mountain community to participate in research. Having studies that are open and accruing enables a greater number of High Country residents to participate in research.

Dr. Anna Sobol is the Principal Investigator for all currently open studies. Marjorie Hrozencik RN, BSN, OCN, CCRP serves as Clinical Research Coordinator.

Current Trials

Seby B. Jones Regional Cancer Center is a research affiliate site for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. We partner with UNC-CH to conduct research trials.

The Clinical Research Coordinator is available on request to conduct a comprehensive search for clinical trials across the USA and assist in arranging an appointment.  She may be contacted at (828) 265-5008 or .

Clinical Trials Web Resources for Patients

American Cancer Society

Provides basic clinical trials information and a clinical trials matching service

Provides general information about clinical trials and stories from people who have been on clinical trials

Medline Plus Interactive Clinical Trials Tutorials and Information

Online educational program for patients and families from the National Library of Medicine

US National Cancer Institute Clinical Trials Education Series

Designed for patients and the general public in both English and Spanish

US National Institutes of Health Clinical Research Trials and You

Provides basic information and volunteer stories

About Clinical Trials (ACT)

Collaboration between the American Cancer Society and Genentech offers a patient kit, containing an educational brochure with DVD and USB drive. Call 1-800-227-2345 to request a kit or online

Cancer Genetics Program

Cancer Genetics Program

A collaboration with Carolinas HealthCare System and the Seby B. Jones Regional Cancer Center via telehealth makes Cancer Genetics available to our patients.

What is offered?

The initial visit is with a genetic counselor via telehealth to review the patient’s personal and family history, discuss the risks and benefits of genetic testing, and provide support in healthcare decision making. This visit is free of charge.

If a patient elects to proceed with testing, the blood test will be drawn at our Cancer Center, with review of the cost/insurance coverage prior to testing. Upon receipt of the results, they will be reviewed via telehealth with a genetic counselor and geneticist. This visit will allow for discussion on cancer risk, implication of these results for family members, recommendations on cancer management. Screening tests for prevention will be reviewed and appropriate referrals offered to the patient as well.

Who should be screened?

Patients who have a family history of the following:

  • Multiple or bilateral cancers
  • A known familial cancer syndrome
  • Two or more relatives with the same type of hereditary cancer like breast, colon, gastric, ovarian, or thyroid cancer
  • Cancer onset at an early age


Cancer Patient Support Services

Cancer Patient Support Services

The Seby B. Jones Regional Cancer Center offers several support services to help guide patients and their families throughout their cancer treatment.

  • Cancer Navigation Program: RN, Financial, Social Resources, Breast
  • Licensed Counseling
  • Clinical Research Trials
  • Genetic Counseling Referral
  • Pharmacy
  • Nursing Quality Council
  • Support Groups
  • Pastoral Care Department
  • Medical Library
  • Rehabilitation Services
  • Cancer Conference/Tumor Board
  • Nutrition Counseling
  • Volunteer Services
  • Palliative Care
Melanie Childers, BCC, LPCS

Melanie Childers, BCC, LPCS

(828) 266-1178

Pastoral Care Services

In order to provide holistic care that addresses our physical bodies, minds, emotions, and spirits, the Cancer Center offers both spiritual support and licensed professional counseling to patients and their families while the patient is in active treatment. Individuals may request consultation with and support from the chaplain at any time. There is no charge for this service. The professional chaplain is board certified through the Association of Professional Chaplains, and is trained to work with people of any faith, or of no faith.

This service, provided free of charge, is made possible through cooperation with the Appalachian Regional Behavioral Health Department. For more information or to schedule an appointment for either of these confidential services, please contact Melanie Childers.

Angie Del Nero

Angie Del Nero

Social Worker
(828) 262-4332

Social Work

The Social Worker meets with each patient starting treatment to identify barriers to treatment. She can address transportation issues as well as financial concerns not related to insurance. She is also the person to see for needs regarding Nutritional Supplements, Advance Directives and the Resource Center. The Resource Center has books and literature available for check out and a Wig Boutique that offers wigs, hats, bras, turbans, scarves and prosthetics at no charge.

Laura Shroyer, RDN, LDN

Laura Shroyer, RDN, LDN

Registered Dietician
(828) 262-4158 (Watauga)
(828) 737-7434 (Avery)

Nutrition Counseling

Research has shown that good nutrition helps patients stay stronger and respond better to cancer treatment. The Cancer Center offers evidence-based nutrition information from a licensed, registered dietitian throughout the course of treatment to assist with nutrition related issues such as weight loss, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, altered taste and other diet concerns. The dietitian also provides education on current nutrition recommendations, use of nutritional supplements and diet guidelines for after cancer treatment. The dietitian visits the cancer center regularly and is available by appointment to provide nutrition consultations. This is a free service that is available to current as well as past patients of the Seby B. Jones Regional Cancer Center. For more information, or to set up an appointment, please contact Laura Shroyer, RDN, LDN.

Kelly Drummonds

Financial Navigator
(828) 262-4413

Financial Navigation

Assistance is available to patients who are in need of help to pay their accounts. Assistance is based on the guarantor’s financial status. In order to determine this, the patient must complete a Financial Assistance Application. You may be eligible for assistance through government programs such as Medicaid, Purchase of Medical Care, Crime Victims Compensation, Vocational Rehabilitation, or other community programs. The Financial Navigator helps patient apply for assistance programs, and acts as the liaison with the ARHS Patient Accounts Department in the Business Office.

Paul Young, RN

Paul Young, RN

Nurse Navigator
(828) 262-9121

Nurse Navigation

Paul Young, RN serves as the Cancer Center nurse navigator. He has worked for Appalachian Regional Healthcare System for 40 years. He has an integral role in preparing the new patient visit, provides chemotherapy education to patients starting chemotherapy, provides radiation education to those starting radiation, and orchestrates coverage of medications that might otherwise be very costly to our patients. He is the liaison between the patient and provider with any patient medical needs and helps to navigate the patients’ journey here at the Cancer Center.

Home Health, Palliative, and Hospice Care

Home Health, Palliative, and Hospice Care

Home Health

This is a service that can be ordered by your medical provider that can include:

  • Assessment for medical equipment (cane, shower chair, lift chair, hospital bed, etc.)
  • On-Call nursing service
  • Providing of medical supplies
  • Social work assessment
  • Home Health Aide for bathing/dressing
  • At home physical therapy/occupational/speech therapy for homebound patients
  • Nutritional counseling
  • Medication management


Palliative Care

This is a service that can be ordered by your medical provider that applies to patients during treatment of a chronic illness or projected chronic illness, like cancer at any time. It can include:

  • All Home Health services as stated above under Home Health.
  • Discussion on goals of care
  • Symptom management, such as pain management, nausea, bowel changes
  • Support for family/caregivers
  • Practical support for transportation caregiving at home


Hospice Care

This is a service that can be ordered by your medical provider that applies to a patient with a 6 month or less life expectancy. If a patient lives beyond this projected date, they can re-enroll. Hospice can include:

  • All Home Health services as stated above under Home Health.
  • Respite care
  • Can be provided in nursing living facilities
  • Dietary consults
  • Chaplain services
  • Bereavement care
  • Social work access for patient and caregivers
  • Providing of medical and personal supplies