With two-thirds of Americans now living at least 5 years after a cancer diagnosis, there are currently 14.5 million cancer survivors living in the United States. By 2024, that number is expected to increase by nearly 25%.1 Although the growing number of survivors is a welcome sign of progress, this trend also presents challenges, because many of these individuals require significant, ongoing care, such as surveillance for cancer recurrence, screening for new cancers, and care for the long-term effects of their treatment.
While ASCO provides a variety of tools and resources for oncologists, a broader workforce is responsible for providing survivorship care, creating communication and coordination among oncology professionals and primary care providers to ensure delivery of the highest quality care.
To address these challenges, the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), the American College of Physicians (ACP), and ASCO are cosponsoring the inaugural Cancer Survivorship Symposium: Advancing Care and Research, taking place January 15–16, 2016, in San Francisco, California.
A Unique Collaboration
As the first collaborative project between these organizations, the Symposium will feature educational sessions, keynote lectures, oral and poster presentations of research, and networking events and will cover topics ranging from risk assessment and care-delivery models to how best to provide multidisciplinary education and training.
“In 2005, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) released a hallmark report on cancer survivorship, subtitled ‘Lost in Transition’.2 Critical problems identified by the IOM that have led to fractured care experienced by many cancer survivors are the lack of communication between oncology specialists and primary care providers and the haphazard way in which many survivors are transitioned,” said Kevin C. Oeffinger, MD, Symposium Steering Committee Chair and Director of the Cancer Survivorship Center at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. “AAFP, ACP, and ASCO are championing an effort to change this paradigm. I anticipate that this monumental effort will serve as a catalyst to bring these two worlds together, and ultimately, to improve the health care of cancer survivors.”
With representatives from all three cosponsoring organizations contributing to the Symposium planning process, the Cancer Survivorship Symposium program is designed for a broad audience, including primary care providers, oncologists, nurses, advanced practice providers, residents, and oncology fellows interested in taking an interdisciplinary approach to survivorship care, as well as representatives from cancer advocacy organizations.
“This Symposium will provide valuable education for primary care providers and oncologists alike as to how best to enhance survivorship care based on data, current best practices, and collaborative discussions across specialties,” said Michelle Quiogue, MD, FAAFP, 2016 Symposium Steering Committee Member and Vice Speaker for the California Academy of Family Physicians.
Placing Research Into Clinical Context
One of the main goals of the Cancer Survivorship Symposium is to help attendees understand the latest research in this field, and the program reflects this objective. Each session at the Symposium will incorporate multiple perspectives to demonstrate how coordination can help providers overcome barriers to optimal survivorship care. In addition, abstract presentations and discussions will give a more complete picture of current data. The program will also include two poster sessions and an oral abstract session featuring abstract categories such as Care Coordination and Financial Implications, Psychosocial Issues, Health Promotion, and Recurrence and Secondary Malignancies.
“The Cancer Survivorship Symposium was created to fill the need for more research to enhance the care of our cancer survivors,” said Ann Partridge, MD, MPH, FASCO, Symposium Program Committee Chair and Director of the Adult Survivorship Program at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. “It will showcase a lot of the work that’s been going on over the last decade, so that patients’ health outcomes can be enhanced.”
Innovative Learning Formats
The inaugural Cancer Survivorship Symposium will also feature unique learning and networking opportunities to help attendees get the most out of their experience.
Meet the Faculty Networking Roundtables: Attendees can interact with multidisciplinary experts in a small-group setting. Early-career topics, such as finding a mentor and avoiding burnout, will be a focus each day.
LIFe Café: The LIFe (Living in the Future) Café gives attendees the opportunity to have frequently asked or case-specific questions about survivorship care answered by experts in the field. In addition, small group discussions will allow for networking across specialties. This is a ticketed event; learn more at survivorsym.org.
Keynote Lectures: Multiple keynote lectures will set the stage for individual presentations. Keynote speakers include:
Fitzhugh Mullan, MD, the Murdock Head Professor of Medicine and Health Policy at George Washington University, Founding President of the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship, and a cancer survivor
Anthony L. Back, MD, a medical oncologist, well-known expert in physician communication skills, and Director of Palliative Care at the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance
Smita Bhatia, MD, MPH, a cancer survivorship researcher, Director of the Institute for Cancer Outcomes and Survivorship in the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) School of Medicine, and the Vice Chair for Outcomes in the Department of Pediatrics and Associate Director for Cancer Outcomes Research at the UAB Comprehensive Cancer Center.
Visit survivorsym.org for more information, to submit an abstract, or to register and reserve a hotel room. ■
© 2015. American Society of Clinical Oncology. All rights reserved.
1. American Cancer Society: Cancer Treatment & Survivorship Facts & Figures, 2014-2015. Available at http://www.cancer.org/acs/groups/content/@research/documents/document/acspc-042801.pdf. Accessed July 30, 2015.
2. McCabe MS, Bhatia S, Oeffinger KC, et al: American Society of Clinical Oncology: Achieving high-quality cancer survivorship care. J Clin Oncol 31:631-640, 2013.
Abstract Submission Deadline:
September 1, 2015, at 11:59 PM (EDT)
Early Registration and Hotel Reservation Deadline:
Wednesday, December 9, 2015,
at 11:59 PM (EST)
Symposium: Advancing Care and Research:
January 15–16, 2016
Visit survivorsym.org for more.