APOS Announces 2015 Award Winners at the World Congress of Psycho-Oncology


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Matthew J. Loscalzo, LCSW

Rebecca Kirch, JD

Donna Greenberg, MD

Allison Applebaum, PhD

Gwendolyn Quinn, PhD

The American Psychosocial Oncology Society (APOS) honored five award winners at the 2015 World Congress of Psycho-Oncology, held from July 28–August 1 in Washington, DC.

Holland Distinguished Leadership Award: Matthew J. Loscalzo, LCSW 

Professor Loscalzo is the Liliane Elkins Professor in Supportive Care Programs in the Department of Supportive Care Medicine, Professor in Department of Population Sciences, Executive Director of the Department of Supportive Care Medicine, and the Administrative Director of the Sheri & Les Biller Patient and Family Resource Center at the City of Hope-National Medical Center.

Professor Loscalzo has previously held leadership positions at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, the Johns Hopkins Oncology Center, and the Rebecca and John Moores Cancer Center at the University of California at San Diego. He is recognized as a pioneer in the clinical, educational, and research domains of psychosocial aspects of cancer.   

Distinguished Public Service Award: Rebecca Kirch, JD

Ms. Kirch is the American Cancer Society’s Director of Quality of Life & Survivorship. She provides strategic direction and coordination for the Society’s national agenda addressing quality care and quality-of-life issues for all adults and children facing cancer and its aftermath. Through research, programs, and advocacy, these initiatives include a suite of policies and practices that integrate palliative care for managing pain, symptoms and stress, psychosocial care for emotional support, impairment-driven rehabilitation for addressing disability, and enhancing person-centered and goal-directed clinical communication skills.  

Ms. Kirch previously served on the senior leadership team of the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) as Associate Director of Policy and earlier, as Deputy Director of its federal lobbying team.

Outstanding Clinical Care Award: Donna Greenberg, MD

At Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) Cancer Center, Dr. Greenberg has been a psychiatric consultant to oncology patients and their oncologists over the past several decades, teaching and consulting on the orthopedic oncology service, pain service, and palliative care service, as well as the consultation psychiatry service. In addition to acting as Program Director of Psychiatric Oncology at MGH, she is Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and has directed medical student teaching in psychiatry at MGH over these years.

She is a founding member and fellow of APOS and served as president from 2008–2009. She is also Past President of the Association of Medicine and Psychiatry and serves on the Council of Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine. She is co-editor of the 2015 textbook Psychiatric Care of the Medical Patient, psychosocial oncology section editor of the journal Cancer, and an editor of APOS’s Psycho-Oncology: A Quick Reference.

New Investigator Award: Allison Applebaum, PhD

Dr. Applebaum is an Assistant Attending Psychologist in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and an Assistant Professor of Psychology at ­Weill-Cornell Medical College. Dr. ­Applebaum is the Director of the Caregivers Clinic at Memorial.

The Caregivers Clinic at Memorial is the first of its kind in the nation and provides comprehensive psychosocial care to family members and friends of patients who experience significant distress and burden as a result of their caregiving role.

Dr. Applebaum’s program of research focuses on the development and dissemination of psychosocial interventions for patients with cancer and their caregivers. Her work is internationally recognized, and she is currently funded by the American Cancer Society to develop and evaluate a Web-based, meaning-centered psychotherapeutic intervention that addresses existential distress and decreased quality of life experienced by cancer caregivers. Dr. ­Applebaum is also working on the adaptation of emotion regulation therapy for cancer caregivers. 

Outstanding Education and Training Award: Gwendolyn Quinn, PhD

Dr. Quinn is a Senior Member in the Health Outcomes and Behavior Program of the H.L. Moffitt Cancer Center and Director of the Survey Methods Core. She is Professor in the Department of Oncologic Sciences at the Morsani College of Medicine and the Department of Community and Family Health in the College of Public Health at the University of South Florida.

Her research and training efforts focus on understanding the determinants of health behavior to improve oncology health communication initiatives. She has developed a line of research focused on improving patient/physician communication, through understanding the barriers and benefits of health-care service use from the perspective of both the patient/consumer and health-care providers.

Her current research and training efforts have been in the context of reproductive health; sexuality; fertility preservation; cancer genetics services; quality-of-life issues in pediatric, adolescent, and young adult cancer populations; smoking relapse prevention; clinical trials (including minority barriers to participation); and training researchers to conduct research with high-risk populations. ■


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