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Patient Enters Full Remission

Patient Ronda Benavidez (second from left) is joined by Dr. Penny Cooper (left), husband Frank, and Infusion Manager Vee McAuliffe (right) at the annual Stephanie L. Miner Walk in October.

Over one year ago, Ronda Benavidez was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma, a type of cancer that affects the immune system. Today, she is in full remission.

San Luis Valley Health first published a story on Benavidez in September of 2014, shortly after Benavidez had begun treatment. The majority of the scope of her treatment took place at San Luis Valley Health.

Benavidez was diagnosed right around the time that San Luis Valley Health brought its first full-time Oncologist, Dr. Penny Cooper, on board to the organization.

After many appointments with Dr. Cooper and dozens of rounds of chemotherapy, Benavidez is cancer free.

“Dr. Cooper is awesome,” said Benavidez in a recent telephone conversation. “We owe so much to her and the team and credit them for where I am today.”

Benavidez, who stated that she feels great and is excited to see her hair coming back, was recently asked to be the Survivor Lead of Relay for Life by the American Cancer Society.

The Relay for Life event will take place in Alamosa on July 10th. Benavidez will be leading the group of cancer survivors and will help plan the event.

“We are so excited for Ronda and her family,” said Dr. Cooper. “From Imaging to Infusion Therapy, as well as our Oncology Team, her case shows what our team is capable of doing for patients in the San Luis Valley.”