Cancer Navigation Services
John D. French, III,
John is a patient navigator for Infirmary Cancer Care. In his role, John collaborates with social workers, nutritionists, case managers, physicians, nurses, technicians and hospital staff to ensure the best quality of life for his patients and their family.
Prior to joining the Infirmary Cancer Care team, John worked in the cancer center at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. John is passionate about patient care and encourages them to be involved in their treatment plan. His goal as a navigator is to be a strong patient advocate and educate his patients on treatment options and what to expect while undergoing treatments and screenings.
John facilitates the head and neck cancer support group at Infirmary Cancer Care. Infirmary Cancer Care is one of two healthcare systems in the state of Alabama to partner with Support for People with Oral and Head and Neck Cancers (SPOHNC) for information and education that supports patients with these types of cancers.
John attended the University of Alabama at Birmingham where he earned a bachelor degree in sociology and a minor in community health. He has also earned a national certification as an oncology-trained lay patient navigator from George Washington University Cancer Center. In 2016, he joined Infirmary Health as the first lay cancer navigator.
Valenda Lankford, LGSW
Valenda Lankford is a financial navigator for Infirmary Cancer Care who provides financial counseling and connections to assistance programs for oncology patients. In her role, she helps patients by locating community resources, navigating insurance programs and coordinates pharmaceutical assistance programs related to oncology patients.
For more than 10 years, Valenda has worked in a healthcare setting. Prior to becoming a financial patient navigator, Valenda worked in case management as a social worker and has extensive experience in oncology, rehabilitation, hospice care, palliative care and neurology.
Valenda is passionate about empowering, collaborating and educating patients. Her goal as a financial navigator is to help alleviate financial anxiety that is often experienced by oncology patients during treatment.
Valenda earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Mobile in business administration and a master’s degree in social work from the University of Southern Mississippi.