publication date: May. 4, 2018

In Brief

National Coalition for Cancer Research to cease operations as member groups take on their own education, policy roles

The National Coalition for Cancer Research and NCCR announced plans for the two organizations to begin winding down their activities and cease operations, effective Aug. 31.

The coalition was established in 1986, bringing together 19 nonprofit cancer research, professional and patient organizations to educate the general public about the value of cancer research. To complement the work of the coalition, a sister group—NCCR—was formed as an advocacy organization focused on basic, translational and clinical research.

“When the National Coalition for Cancer Research and NCCR were created, they were among the only coalitions of cancer organizations with distinct policy and educational missions,” said Wendy Selig, president. “Today, thanks in part to the pioneering efforts of the coalition and NCCR, many of our member organizations have active, sophisticated, and highly effective advocacy and public policy programs at the federal, state, and grassroots levels.

“We are confident that our community is well positioned to continue this work, along with providing educational opportunities for Members of Congress and their staff, the cancer research and patient advocacy communities, as well as the public.”

The National Coalition for Cancer Research is known for its “Cancer 101” Congressional Briefing Series. The series has convened cancer researchers, administration officials, patient and provider representatives and others to present educational programs on a wide variety of cancer research and cancer research-related topics.

“The AACR was one of the founding organizations of the NCCR, and our involvement at that time – when advocacy for cancer research was just becoming more active–was a great learning experience for all of us,” said Margaret Foti, chief executive officer of the American Association for Cancer Research and a past president of the coalition. “Over the years, the NCCR facilitated significant collaborations across highly respected organizations representing all sectors of the research and patient care community, and this innovative advocacy for science-based public policies has clearly accelerated the pace of progress against cancer.”

The two organizations plan to wind down their activities in the coming months, maintaining their active efforts as the current appropriations process continues, and hosting additional “Cancer 101” activities.


Campaign to educate Washington, DC, public about clinical trials

A new initiative aims to raise awareness among Washington, DC, area patients and physicians that clinical trials may be the first-line option, as opposed to the last resort, for newly-diagnosed cancer patients. The new effort is spearheaded by Advancing Cancer Treatment, a philanthropic initiative that supports patients’ access to the best in modern cancer treatments.

Currently, fewer than 5 percent of cancer patients participate in clinical trials, principally because they lack awareness. Of patients who do not participate in clinical trials, 80 percent report it is because their physician did not tell them the option exists. Ninety-one percent of cancer patients in clinical trials report a very favorable experience.

Advancing Cancer Treatment is recognizing Leadership Award winners in a series of public awareness advertisements running in June in The Washingtonian and Baltimore Magazine.

The ads are intended to reward those progressive physicians who are actively supporting their patients’ access to the most advanced options for improved care, including clinical trials for prostate, bladder and kidney cancer.

  • Nancy Dawson, urological oncologist at Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital in Washington and founder of Nancy, founder of Genito-Urinary Multidisciplinary DC Regional Oncology Project,

  • Adam Metwalli, president of GUMDROP and Chief, Division of Urology, Department of Surgery at Howard University Hospital in Washington, and

  • Channing Paller, past president of GUMDROP and a Medical Oncologist at Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center at Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington along with several dozen other physicians, received Leadership Awards from ACT.

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