Advocacy Chats – Educational Conversations on Cancer Advocacy and Policy Issues
Knowledge As Power After a Pancreatic Cancer Diagnosis
Pancreatic cancer is a rare form of cancer that presents unique challenges, making education around it critical for those facing a diagnosis. COA Director of Patient Advocacy & Education Rose Gerber, MS, was joined by Let’s Win Pancreatic Cancer Founding Executive Director Cindy Price Gavin to discuss pancreatic cancer, resources available to patients, and how to support those experiencing the disease on Wednesday, November 8. Stream it on @OncologyCOA’s YouTube channel
ICYMI: The Role of Pharmacists in Community Oncology
Pharmacists contribute much more to community oncology practices than just dispensing drugs—they interact with and advocate for patients daily. COA Director of Clinical Initiatives Judy Alberto, MHA, RPh, BCOP, and Hematology-Oncology Associates of Central New York Chief Strategy Officer Jonas Congelli, RPh, joined COA’s Rose Gerber to discuss the critically important role of oncology pharmacists. Stream it on @OncologyCOA’s YouTube channel.
Advocacy Spotlight: Kurt Tauer, MD, FACP, Medical Oncologist/Hematologist, West Cancer Center & Research Institute, Germantown, TN
When forming the Community Oncology Alliance (COA) 20 years ago, Kurt Tauer, MD, FACP, had one goal: ensure community oncology could continue providing high-quality, convenient care.
Facing major Medicare reforms that threatened the viability of community cancer clinics, Dr. Tauer and colleagues at the West Cancer Center & Research Institute—one of the earliest community oncology practices in the United States—founded the Community Oncology Alliance as a collective voice for independent, community-based cancer care.
“The Medicare Modernization Act wasn’t just going to cut our profits a bit—it was going to mean we’d have to close, and millions of patients would lose access to cancer care,” he said.
Dr. Tauer and the newly established Community Oncology Alliance arrived in Washington, D.C., finding policymakers knew little about cancer care, let alone independent community oncology. By educating key policymakers on the dangers of proposed reforms, COA prevented the potentially devastating impact of the policy change—and cemented itself as the sole advocate for community oncology patients and practices.
Celebrating COA’s 20th anniversary at the 2023 Community Oncology Conference, Dr. Tauer offered a reminder of the organization’s founding principle. “Our patients need a voice,” Dr. Tauer explained. “COA has been, and always will be, a vehicle to make sure that voice is heard.”
Cancer News You Can Use
COA’s Policy Agenda Gains Steam On Capitol Hill, As The House Elects A Speaker – American Journal of Managed Care 10/25
After more than a decade of educating members of Congress on terms such as pharmacy benefit managers and site neutrality, leaders of the Community Oncology Alliance (COA) have created bipartisan support in Congress for key agenda items, with hope that some will pass by year’s end. Now, with Rep. Mike Johnson, R-Louisiana, elected the new House Speaker after weeks of upheaval, COA can get back to moving its agenda.
Adults living by themselves may have a higher risk of dying from cancer compared with those who live with others, a new study suggests, and the share of adults in the United States who live alone is on the rise. The research, published Thursday in the journal Cancer, found that among 114,772 working-age adults who lived alone, 2.5% of them died of cancer during the study period. In comparison, among 358,876 adults in the study who lived with others, 1.6% died of cancer.
Breast Cancer Is Deadlier For Black Women. A Study Of Mammograms Could Help Close The Gap – The Associated Press 10/17
Are 3D mammograms better than standard 2D imaging for catching advanced cancers? A clinical trial is recruiting thousands of volunteers—including a large number of Black women who face disparities in breast cancer death rates—to try to find out. The newer 3D technique has been around for a decade, but there’s never been conclusive evidence that it’s better than 2D at detecting advanced cancers—but the new study, which is prioritizing diversity in its participants, could provide it.
COMMUNITY ONCOLOGY 101 – Spotlight on Cancer Care: Practicing in the Community
Community oncology practices put patients first. Learn how an independent practice in the remote town of Pahrump, Nevada delivers high-quality cancer care locally, saving community members from having to travel hours each day to receive lifesaving care. Watch Hope Cancer Care of Nevada’s story in this Spotlight on Cancer Care.
Resources for Chapters
The Community Oncology Alliance YouTube channel offers an extensive library of educational content designed to help advocates make a change. Discover the latest opportunities and innovations in cancer care, the biggest challenges facing community oncology, and more. Visit the @OncologyCOA channel.