The National Association for Proton Therapy celebrates Coach Ron’s remarkable journey, from proton therapy patient to being awarded the prestigious CSC Founders Award for his commitment to making a difference in the lives of those diagnosed with cancer. By sharing his story and advocating for advanced treatments like proton therapy, he exemplifies the enduring strength of the human spirit and the enduring power of gratitude, generosity, and community.
Coach Ron and NAPT were featured by NBC News 4 last year:
Facing a cancer diagnosis is a life-altering experience, and Coach Ron’s story is a reminder that it can happen to anyone, regardless of their status or background. His experiences during treatment, from the compassion of the medical professionals who cared for him to the shared stories of fellow patients, deeply impacted him. With his cancer battle now behind him, Coach Ron has made it his mission to make a positive impact in the lives of those facing similar challenges.
“When my insurance company denied me coverage for what would be life-saving treatment, my team and doctors advocated for me,” Coach Rivera recounted. He has partnered with national leaders like Danielle Carnival, Deputy Assistant to the President for the Cancer Moonshot, and groups like the National Association of Proton Therapy Providers to advocate for affordable healthcare, particularly proton therapy. He also serves as a spokesman for the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network to honor his brother Mickey, who died from pancreatic cancer in 2015.
One of Coach Ron’s primary objectives is to raise awareness about the benefits of proton therapy. He acknowledges his good fortune in having access to this advanced treatment and wants to ensure that others are aware of this potentially life-changing option. His personal experiences and challenges with prior authorization and insurance denials have fueled his commitment to addressing these issues, advocating for a smoother process and broader access to proton therapy. Proton therapy’s precision and reduced side effects are a game-changer in the fight against cancer, and Coach Ron’s advocacy can pave the way for numerous patients to access this innovative treatment.