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Global Cancer Care
Issues in Oncology

Exploring Practical Strategies for Cancer Care in Low-Resource Settings

One of the featured “Big Debates” at the 2016 World Cancer Congress in Paris addressed this question: Are scarce resources best applied to prevention rather than treatment? Many experts do not see prevention vs treatment in such stark terms or even as a realistic scenario. It’s a false dichotomy,...

cost of care
global cancer care
breast cancer

Peter Bach, MD, on The Global Cost of Cancer Care

Peter Bach, MD, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, summarizes his plenary lecture on drug costs and their effect on the affordability of cancer care worldwide (Plenary Lecture 3).

Global Cancer Care

Peer-Reviewed Indian Journal of Surgical Oncology Meets Challenges, Succeeds in Developing Country

Launching a new cancer journal is a risky and arduous endeavor, especially for a specialty publication in resource-challenged countries in the developing world. To succeed, a specialty journal must publish articles from established clinical researchers that quickly garner funding and captivate its...

Global Cancer Care

Cancer on the Global Stage: Incidence and Cancer-Related Mortality in Albania

The ASCO Post is pleased to present this special focus on the worldwide cancer burden. The aim of this special feature is to highlight the global cancer burden for various countries of the world.  For the convenience of the reader, each issue will focus on one country from one of the six regions of ...

Global Cancer Care

Baylor and Texas Children’s Hospital Partner to Bring Fellowship Training in Oncology and Hematology to East Africa

Medical students and practicing pediatricians in Uganda and other East African countries lack access to specialty pediatric training and education in oncology and hematology in their region, despite the need for doctors to provide care for patients with cancer and blood disorders. A new program of...

issues in oncology
global cancer care

ASTRO 2016: Unmet Need for Radiation Therapy Found Among Nearly Half of Eligible Cancer Patients in Nine Developing Countries

Although approximately 50% of cancer patients in developing countries need radiation therapy to treat their disease, up to half of these patients do not have access to it, according to research presented by Rosenblatt et al at the 58th Annual Meeting of the American Society for Radiation Oncology...

global cancer care
issues in oncology
palliative care

Emily Haozous, PhD, RN, on Cultural Differences in End-of-Life Care

Emily Haozous, PhD, RN, of the University of New Mexico, discusses health disparities and cultural differences in palliative and end-of-life care, with case study examples drawn from American Indian communities.

pain management
global cancer care
palliative care

James F. Cleary, MD, on Global Access to Opioids

James F. Cleary, MD, of the University of Wisconsin Carbone Cancer Center, talks about the many reasons that 80% of the world’s population lacks access to opioids, the mainstay of cancer pain management.

Issues in Oncology
Global Cancer Care

Making a Difference in the Lives of Others

Quyen D. Chu, MD, MBA, FACS, this year’s recipient of ASCO’s Humanitarian Award, lives by the axiom that “One person can make a positive difference in the lives of others.” Although the term has become cliché, the experiences in Dr. Chu’s life and oncology career prove just how profound and...

lung cancer
cost of care
global cancer care

Swiss Study Examines Cost-Effectiveness of Nivolumab vs Docetaxel in Advanced Nonsquamous NSCLC

Nivolumab, a checkpoint inhibitor approved for patients with squamous and nonsquamous non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) in 2015, is not cost-effective when compared to treatment with docetaxel, chemotherapy medication. However, a Swiss analysis showed the cost-effectiveness of nivolumab is...

Geriatric Oncology
Global Cancer Care

Geriatric Oncology in Asia: The Dawn of a New Era in Cancer Care

Asia is currently experiencing an unprecedented rate of growth in its aging population. This “silver tsunami” has translated into a burgeoning number of older patients with cancer, as cancer is a disease of aging. However, unlike their Western counterparts, elderly patients with cancer in Asia are ...

Issues in Oncology
Global Cancer Care

European Demand for Radiotherapy Expected to Rise Approximately 16% Over Next Decade

The demand for radiotherapy across all European countries will increase by an average of 16% between 2012 and 2025, with the highest expected increase being for prostate cancer cases (24%), according to a new study published by ­Borras et al in Radiotherapy and Oncology.1 These projections came...

Cost of Care
Global Cancer Care

Vast Differences Globally in Cancer Drug Retail Prices

A pilot study revealed large differences in median retail prices for 23 cancer drugs in 7 different countries, with the highest retail prices identified in the United States and the lowest, in India and South Africa. Notably, after the monthly drug price is expressed as a percentage of domestic...

Breast Cancer
Global Cancer Care

Rising Breast Cancer Incidence in Sub-Saharan Africa: Challenges and Opportunities

The incidence of new cases of breast cancer in low- and middle-income countries, particularly in sub-Saharan ­Africa, is rising, and it will take a concerted effort from the international cancer community to counteract this troubling upward trend. It has been estimated that of the 15 million cancer ...

global cancer care

Rakesh Chopra, MD, and Mary Gospodarowicz, MD, on The Indian Perspective of the Current State of Cancer Research and Treatment

Rakesh Chopra, MD, of the Artemis Health Institute, and Mary Gospodarowicz, MD, of Princess Margaret Hospital, discuss oncology from an international point of view.

global cancer care

Nagi S. El-Saghir, MD, PhD, and Mary Gospodarowicz, MD, on The Middle Eastern Perspective of Cancer Research

Nagi S. El-Saghir, MD, of the American University of Beirut, and Mary Gospodarowicz, MD, of the Princess Margaret Hospital, discuss oncology from an international point of view.

global cancer care

Eduardo L. Cazap, MD, PhD, and Mary Gospodarowicz, MD, on The South American Perspective of Cancer Research

Eduardo L. Cazap, MD, PhD, of the Latinamerican & Caribbean Society of Medical Oncology, and Mary Gospodarowicz, MD, of the Princess Margaret Hospital, discuss oncology from an international point of view.

cost of care
global cancer care

ASCO 2016: Vast Differences Globally in Cancer Drug Retail Prices

A pilot study revealed large differences in median retail prices for 23 cancer drugs in 7 different countries, with the highest retail prices identified in the United States and the lowest, in India and South Africa. Notably, after the monthly drug price is expressed as a percentage of domestic...

global cancer care

Lawrence N. Shulman, MD, and Daniel A. Goldstein, MD: Expert Perspectives on Issues in Global Cancer Care

Lawrence N. Shulman, MD, of Abramson Cancer Center at the University of Pennsylvania, and Daniel A. Goldstein, MD, of the Rabin Medical Center, discuss global challenges in cancer care, including treating patients in areas lacking resources, and cancer drug price disparities (Abstract LBA6500).

Issues in Oncology
Global Cancer Care

A Perilous Time for Refugees With Cancer

The numbers are difficult to fathom. According to a report by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), in 2015, over 60 million people worldwide were forcibly displaced as a result of conflict, persecution, generalized violence, or human rights violations.1 Over 9 million of those ...

Global Cancer Care

Oncology and Diplomacy in the Middle East

The Middle East is a vast region comprised largely of developing nations with complicated sociopolitical challenges, violent internecine disputes, and deeply fragmented health-care systems. Not surprisingly, the region’s suboptimal health care contributes to the late diagnosis and poor survival...

Global Cancer Care

Cancer on the Global Stage: Incidence and Cancer-Related Mortality in Israel

The ASCO Post is pleased to continue this special feature on the worldwide cancer burden. In this issue, we feature a close look at the cancer incidence and mortality rates in Israel. The aim of this special feature is to highlight the global cancer burden for various countries of the world. For...

Global Cancer Care

The Time Is Now for the Worldwide Cancer Community to Be Proactive

The ASCO Post recently spoke with nationally recognized surgical oncologist Chandrakanth Are, MBBS, MBA, FRCS, FACS, Jerald L & Carolynn J. Varner Professor of Surgical Oncology & Global Health; Vice Chair of Education; and Program Director, General Surgery Residency, University of Nebraska ...

palliative care
issues in oncology
global cancer care

Site of Death, Health-Care Utilization, and Hospital Expenditures for Patients Dying With Cancer in Developed Countries

In a study reported in JAMA, Bekelman et al assessed the site of death, health-care utilization, and hospital expenditures among patients aged ≥ 65 years dying with cancer in Belgium, Canada, England, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, and the United States. The United States had lower...

lung cancer
global cancer care

Study Finds 36% Increase in Number of Male Smokers in India Over 17 Years

The number of men smoking tobacco in India rose by more than one third to 108 million between 1998 and 2015, according to a new study published in the journal BMJ Global Health. The study also found that cigarettes were replacing the traditional bidi, a small, inexpensive Indian cigarette,...

global cancer care

Tony Mok, MD, and James O. Armitage, MD, on The Current State of Cancer Research and Treatment: The Asian Perspective

James O. Armitage, MD, of the University of Nebraska Medical Center, and Tony Mok, MD, of The Chinese University of Hong Kong, discuss oncology from an international point of view.

global cancer care
gynecologic cancers

Eduardo Cazap, MD, PhD, and James O. Armitage, MD, on The Current State of Cancer Research and Treatment: The Latin American Perspective

Eduardo Cazap, MD, PhD, of the Latin American & Caribbean Society of Medical Oncology, and James O. Armitage, MD, of the University of Nebraska Medical Center, discuss oncology from an international point of view.

global cancer care
cost of care

John Smyth, MD, on The Current State of Cancer Research and Treatment: The European Perspective

John Smyth, MD, of the University of Edinburgh, discusses oncology from an international point of view.

global cancer care
health-care policy

Lawrence N. Shulman, MD, and Clifford A. Hudis, MD, on Cancer Care in Resource-Challenged Areas

Lawrence N. Shulman, MD, of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and Clifford A. Hudis, MD, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, discuss the delivery of cancer care in resource-constrained settings such as Rwanda and Haiti, and plans to conduct research in basic tumor biology of patients in these areas.

palliative care
global cancer care

Irene Higginson, MD, on Palliative and End-of-Life Care: An International Perspective

Irene Higginson, MD, of Cicely Saunders International, discusses the goals of psychosocial palliative care for patients around the world with advanced cancer.

supportive care
global cancer care

Lori Wiener, PhD, DCSW, LCSW-C, and Paul B. Jacobsen, PhD, on IPOS-APOS Themes of This Year’s Meeting

Lori Wiener, PhD, DCSW, LCSW-C, of the National Cancer Institute, and Paul B. Jacobsen, PhD, of the Moffitt Cancer Center, discuss the highlights of this year’s meeting, which for the first time brings together the international and American psychosocial oncology societies.

global cancer care
supportive care

Bradley J. Zebrack, PhD, and Ursula Sansom-Daly, PhD, on Global Psychosocial Standards of Care for Adolescents and Young Adults With Cancer

Bradley J. Zebrack, PhD, of the University of Michigan School of Social Work, and Ursula Sansom-Daly, PhD, of the University of New South Wales, talk about providing supportive care services that meet the unique needs of adolescents and young adults with cancer.

global cancer care

Christoph Zielinski, MD: Highlights of 2015 European Cancer Congress

As Chair of the ECC Local Organizing Committee, Christoph Zielinski, MD, of the Medical University Vienna - General Hospital, shares his thoughts on the important goals and presentations of the 2015 Congress.

global cancer care

Mary K. Gospodarowicz, MD, on Challenges in Cancer Control

Mary K. Gospodarowicz, MD, of Princess Margaret Hospital, discusses the work of the Global Task Force on Radiotherapy for Cancer Control and its efforts to improve access to vital radiation treatment worldwide, especially in low- and middle-income countries.

global cancer care

Looking Ahead With the New ECCO President: Peter L. J. Naredi, MD, PhD

Incoming ECCO President, Peter L. J. Naredi, MD, PhD, of the University of Gothenburg, discusses his upcoming year as the new ECCO President, his vision for the organization, and his views on cancer treatment today.

global cancer care

Milena Sant, MD, on The Latest Findings From the EUROCARE 5 Study

Milena Sant, MD, of Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori, discusses the question of whether Europe is doing better in cancer care since the 1990s (Abstract LBA1).

global cancer care

Cancer Incidence in Indigenous People in Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and the United States

In a population-based study reported in The Lancet Oncology, Suzanne P. Moore, PhD, of Charles Darwin University, Northern Territory, Australia, and colleagues compared cancer incidence in indigenous people in Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and the United States with the incidence in nonindigenous ...

global cancer care

Cancer on the Global Stage: Incidence and Cancer-Related Mortality in Afghanistan

The ASCO Post is pleased to introduce this special focus on the worldwide cancer burden, beginning in this issue with a close look at the cancer incidence and mortality rates in the United States. The aim of this special feature is to highlight the global cancer burden for various countries of the...

Global Cancer Care

A Prominent Oncologist Retraces Her Steps from Baghdad

Maha Hussain, MD, FACP, Professor of Medicine and Urology, is the Associate Director for Clinical Research at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center (UMCCC) and Co-leader of its Prostate Cancer/GU Oncology program. Dr. Hussain recently spoke with The ASCO Post about becoming a...

Global Cancer Care
Health-Care Policy

Cancer Care in the UK: A Conversation with Chris Parker, MD

In the contentious debate over rising health-care spending, the cancer care policies of the British National Health Service (NHS) are often cited by U.S. policymakers as an example of how health-care rationing denies patients life-prolonging treatments based on costs. The ASCO Post recently spoke...

Lymphoma
Global Cancer Care

Treating Cancer in Japan: A Conversation with Kensei Tobinai, MD

In this installment of Oncology Worldwide, internationally regarded lymphoma expert and cancer survivor, Kensei Tobinai, MD, Chief, National Cancer Center Hospital, Tokyo, sheds light on the Japanese oncology experience. Medical Education What was the medical school experience in Japan like? When...

Global Cancer Care
Health-Care Policy

Tobacco Remains the Dominant Global Risk Factor Underlying Cancer

Despite clear evidence that tobacco causes at least 18 types of cancer, as well as many other diseases, many people all over the world smoke or chew tobacco, or are exposed to secondhand smoke. Although smoking among Americans has declined slowly but steadily over the past 40 years, it remains the...

Global Cancer Care

Lessons from a Northern Neighbor: A Conversation with Joseph M. Connors, MD

Policy analysts searching for a better understanding of health-care models often compare the cancer delivery systems of Canada and the United States. The ASCO Post recently spoke with Joseph M. Connors, MD, Clinical Professor and Director of the BC Cancer Agency’s Centre for Lymphoid Cancer,...

Global Cancer Care
Pain Management

Inefficient Markets Impede Cancer Pain Relief

The potent analgesic property of morphine was first isolated in 1804, and after more than 2 centuries morphine is still the gold standard for moderate to severe pain. It is relatively easy to produce, and compared to most pharmaceuticals, morphine is dirt-cheap. Therein lies the cruel conundrum:...

Global Cancer Care
Pain Management
Palliative Care

Untreated Cancer Pain Remains a Significant Global Problem

“Physicians are afraid of morphine … Doctors [in Kenya] are so used to patients dying in pain … they think that this is how you must die. They are suspicious if you don’t die this way — [and feel] that you died prematurely.” —Human Rights Watch interview with Dr. John Weru of Nairobi Hospice,...

Global Cancer Care

Cancer Care in India: Complex Challenges in a Populous Nation

With 1.22 billion people, India is the second most populous country in the world. Experts project that cancer incidence in India will increase by more than two-thirds over the next 20 years, to approximately 1.7 million new cases per year. Due to a range of economic and social issues, most of...

Breast Cancer
Global Cancer Care

Breast Cancer and Noncommunicable Diseases: Where in the World Do We Start?

As the world’s most common cancer among women, and the most likely reason around the globe that a woman will die of cancer, breast cancer affects countries at all economic levels. Despite the common misconception that breast cancer is primarily a problem of high-income countries, the majority of...

Global Cancer Care
Health-Care Policy

Cancer Care in Rwanda: A Model of Creative Partnerships

While disparities in cancer care remain problematic in wealthy industrial nations like the United States, the challenges faced in poorer regions of the world are, by comparison, inestimable. Nationally regarded health-care expert Lawrence N. Shulman, MD, of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, is part of...

Global Cancer Care

Despite Challenges, Initiatives Bring Gradual Improvements to Cancer Care in Lebanon

Nagi S. El Saghir, MD, FACP, Professor of Clinical Medicine and Hematology-Oncology at the American University of Beirut, is the founding President of the Lebanese Society of Medical Oncology (LSMO). Dr. El Saghir has focused much of his research on the early detection, prevention, and treatment of ...

Global Cancer Care

Viral Infection and Liver Cancer: A Global Health Crisis

It is estimated that at least 15% of all cancers worldwide can be attributed to infectious etiologies, mostly viral infections. At this year’s ASCO Annual Meeting, an intriguing session on virally induced cancers provided critical clues that could be of real practical value in advancing our battle...

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