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ACS National Breast Cancer Roundtable launches 2024 - 2029 Strategic Plan

This national roadmap for advocacy and action is centered around four key priority areas.

The ACS National Breast Cancer Roundtable (NBCRT) has launched its 2024-2029 Strategic Plan which provides recommended strategies and activities that our partners can use to help define, prioritize, and accomplish their goals across the breast cancer continuum, offering a national roadmap for advocacy and action. It is centered around four key priority areas:

  • Risk assessment, screening, risk reduction and early diagnosis
  • Access to treatment
  • Clinical trials
  • Support and wellness services 

The plan was developed through a comprehensive and collaborative process involving input from community contributors nationwide. By prioritizing these areas, the ACS NBCRT aims to strengthen collaboration and consensus and drive progress in the breast cancer continuum. Through strategic partnerships, the ACS NBCRT is dedicated to eliminating disparities and reducing mortality rates. 

This plan would not be possible without the ACS NBCRT Leadership, members, persons with lived experiences, generous supporters, and team members for their collaborative efforts

  • HPV Roundtable releases Impact Report and Action Plan

    ​Annual publication summarizes major initiatives from 2023 and key priorities for 2024.​​

    The American Cancer Society National HPV Vaccination Roundtable has released its annual impact report and action plan. The report provides a detailed overview of the roundtable’s major initiatives from last year. Some of the HPV Roundtable’s 2023 accomplishments include:

    • Bringing new organizations into its national network, 
    • Hosting a health summit plan in collaboration with the Professional Collaborations team, 
    • Launching an early career development program,
    • Hosting a joint national meeting with the American Cancer Society National Roundtable on Cervical Cancer.

    ACS Director of Screening and Vaccination Dr. Debbie Saslow, who represented the Patient Support Pillar last month at a forum in the White House on advancing cervical cancer prevention, early detection, and survival, is one of the three tri-chairs of the Roundtable. Gabrielle Darville-Sanders, strategic director, National HPV Vaccination Roundtable, and Christina Turpin, director, National HPV Vaccination Roundtable, also contributed to the report.

    The ACS and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention founded the National HPV Vaccination Roundtable in 2014. It is a coalition of a public, private, and voluntary organizations with expertise relevant to increasing HPV vaccination rates in the U.S. as a way to reduce illness and death from HPV cancers, through coordinated leadership and strategic planning. 

  • Watch the replay of Catch Crucial Catch LIVE

    NFL players, medical experts, and sports personalities talk prostate cancer education and screening.

    The American Cancer Society and National Football League teamed up to host “Crucial Catch LIVE Presented by Sleep Number,” a panel-style conversation that took place on Feb. 6, in Las Vegas, NV, ahead of Super Bowl LVIII which will be played on Feb. 11. “Crucial Catch LIVE” brought together current and former NFL players, medical experts, and sports personalities for an open conversation about prostate cancer. Watch the replay on ACS’ Facebook page.

    Moderated by Brian Custer, two-time Emmy Award-winning sportscaster (ESPN, Showtime Sports, Last Stand Podcast) and prostate cancer survivor, the panel discussion featured:

    • Dr. Robert Winn, MD, American Cancer Society board member and Director, VCU Massey Comprehensive Cancer Center
    • Mike Haynes, retired Las Vegas Raider and Pro Football Hall of Famer; prostate cancer survivor
    • Rashad Jennings, retired New York Giants running back
    • Will Gholston, Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive end and 2023 American Cancer Society Sports Ambassador of the Year
    • Brandon Bolden, Las Vegas Raiders running back, cancer survivor and American Cancer Society Sports Ambassador

    After decades of declining rates, prostate cancer diagnoses have begun to rise again in recent years. The disease disproportionately impacts Black men, who have a higher likelihood of being diagnosed with late-stage prostate cancer than other men, and therefore have higher mortality rates. 

  • ACS launches two new exercise oncology programs

    New programs aimed at helping cancer survivors be physically active.​

    The American Cancer Society has launched two new programs aimed at helping cancer survivors be physically active. 

    Exercise oncology program to launch in six Hope Lodge communities

    ACS has partnered with Maple Tree Cancer Alliance (MTCA) to pilot its evidence based-exercise oncology program in six Hope Lodge communities. The Maple Tree program engages people in active cancer treatment in a free, 12-week structured, online exercise program that has been shown to improve measures of quality of life, as well as cardiovascular and muscular endurance. This, while also decreasing visits to the emergency room, length of hospital stays, and readmissions to the hospital.

    Starting in February, guests at Hope Lodge locations in Jacksonville, Philadelphia, Oklahoma City, St. Louis, Kansas City, and Jackson, MS, will be able to enroll in the program. At the conclusion, participants will have the option to continue with the Maple Tree program at a discounted rate. Depending on the results of the pilot, ACS will seek additional funding to expand the program.

    Increasing the exercise oncology workforce 

    The ACS has also partnered with the American College of Sports Medicine (ASCM) to develop the new ACSM-ACS Cancer Exercise Specialist course. Research consistently shows that physical activity is beneficial for cancer survivors, including during active treatment. The American Cancer Society Nutrition and Physical Activity Guidelines for Cancer Survivors recommend that physical activity assessment and counseling begin as soon as possible after diagnosis, to help patients prepare for treatment, tolerate, and respond to treatments, and manage some cancer-related symptoms and treatment-related side effects. 

    This program aims to increase the number of practitioners able to provide safe, effective, and individualized exercise to anyone living with or beyond a cancer diagnosis. This includes certified fitness professionals, as well as other allied health professionals, including physical therapists and PT assistants, rehabilitation therapists, nurses and nurse practitioners, and physicians and physicians’ assistants who work with patients with cancer. A bachelor’s degree in exercise science or related field or equivalent is highly recommended but not required. 

  • Marking World Cancer Day

    Learn more about how ACS is working toward equity in cancer care for all.​​​

    Equity in cancer care is at the heart of the American Cancer Society’s mission. And we know cancer impacts everyone, in every country. That’s why World Cancer Day – which is Sunday, Feb. 4 – is an ideal time to learn more about what ACS is doing to help end cancer as we know it around the globe, for everyone. The theme of this year’s event is “close the care gap.” 

    A few quick facts about cancer around the world:

    • Cancer is the 2nd leading cause of death worldwide and is responsible for 10 million deaths a year.
    • Globally, about 1 in 6 deaths is due to cancer and approximately 70% occur in low- and middle-income countries.

    Around the world, ACS is focused on global cancer prevention, treatment, and patient support. The organization collaborates with partners in low and middle-income countries to reduce the stark disparities in cancer outcomes. We work through both advocacy and patient support to improve the lives of cancer patients and their families.

    • Convening cancer survivors to advocate for cervical cancer elimination.
    • Promoting the uptake of HPV vaccination to prevent cervical cancer.
    • Supporting the African Cancer Coalition’s effort to develop and disseminate national policies and the NCCN Harmonized Guidelines for Sub-Saharan Africa.
    • Improving access to essential cancer medicines.
    • Expanding patient navigation program design and implementation through our BEACON Initiative.
    • Developing and disseminating cancer education materials for patients and caregivers and training health care workers in patient-centered education through the EQUIPPED Initiative. 
    • And improving safe handling and administration of chemotherapy through ChemoSafe.

    What can you do?

    • Look for World Cancer Day-related posts on ACS brand social media channels this weekend for opportunities to amplify these messages to your own networks. Check out the Q1 social media toolkit for more resources.
    • Read more about how ACS CAN, the National Comprehensive Cancer Network, and the National Minority Quality Forum are announcing three key areas of policy focus as part of the Alliance for Cancer Care Equity joint collaboration in honor of World Cancer Day. The effort focuses on advancing diversity in clinical trials, improving cancer screening and early detection, and increasing access to patient navigation.
    • Relay For Life and Making Strides Against Breast Cancer registration efforts over the next few days will also include World Cancer Day-related messages. 
    • Learn more about ACS’ work around the world – and be sure to check out The Cancer Atlas, which includes an interactive online resource where you can discover more by country or trend.

  • ACS CARES app now available in Spanish

    New version helps Spanish speakers navigate the cancer journey with confidence.​​​

    The ACS CARES app is now available in Spanish! Providing the ACS CARES app in Spanish is just one of the many ways ACS is committed to expanding multi-cultural engagement in our patient support programs.

    Last year, with support from the Deloitte Health Equity Institute, including a $1 million dollar commitment over two years, the American Cancer Society nationally launched ACS CARES (Community Access to Resources, Education, and Support), which equips those facing cancer with curated content, programs, and services to fit their specific cancer journey.

    The ACS CARES mobile app provides patients and caregivers an easy, free way to:

    • Access personalized, quality cancer-related information that updates as they age, the situation changes, or new information becomes available.
    • Connect one-on-one with trained community volunteers who share the same cancer experiences and background including diagnosis, location, military status, race, and ethnicity.
    • Find reliable information on addressing important topics such as emotional health, finances, transportation, and dependent support.
    • Speak directly with American Cancer Society cancer information specialists when they have questions, day or night, 365 days a year.

    You can get the app on Google Play or download it on the Apple Store. Note: there is not a separate Spanish app to download. For those with Spanish selected as their internal phone settings language, the ACS CARES app will be displayed in Spanish upon downloading.

  • National roundtable discusses ‘Pathways of Care’

    Annual meeting focused on the patient experience across the lung cancer continuum.​

    The theme, “Pathways of Care: Focusing on the Patient Experience Across the Lung Cancer Continuum,” inspired the Washington, DC., location for an annual ACS roundtable meeting. The American Cancer Society National Lung Cancer Roundtable (ACS NLCRT) hosted its seventh annual meeting Dec. 4 – 5 in our nation’s capital. The event brought together 350 attendees and 19 funding organizations. Patients were integral to our annual meeting, actively participating in keynote, general, and concurrent sessions. A patient panel discussion during the first day of the meeting is pictured above. 

    This year’s meeting featured two keynote speakers, followed by moderated panel discussions and questions from the audience. On day one, Laurie Fenton Ambrose, CEO of GO2 for Lung Cancer, shared her experiences working in lung cancer policy, from her early days as a staffer on Capitol Hill to her current leadership of the nation’s leading lung cancer advocacy organization. On day two, Dr. Eliseo Pérez-Stable, director of the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities at the National Institutes of Health, addressed research and clinical science gaps in diverse populations. Read their bios and background on all speakers on the ACS NLCRT website.

    During the annual meeting, ACS NLCRT member organizations presented 30 posters highlighting the work they are leading in their communities, through their organizations, and as part of NLCRT task groups. Other notable happenings included a gathering of the biomarker testing ECHO staff and clinicians, pictured above, and young lung cancer advocates representing the American Lung Cancer Screening Initiative holding up white ribbons. See more photos in the ACS NLCRT X account.

    Chief Patient Officer Dr. Arif Kamal shared with team members a special shout out to Lauren Rosenthal strategic director, National Lung Cancer Roundtable and the entire ACS NLCRT team for helping ensure the success of this event.

    The ACS NLCRT was established in 2017. Currently, it is a national coalition of more than 220 member organizations with a shared mission to create lung cancer survivors. The ACS NLCRT’s scope of work is comprehensive and covers the lung cancer continuum – from risk reduction, tobacco prevention and control, early detection (screening and incidental lung nodule management), and guideline-based staging, biomarker testing, and treatment to survivorship, including overarching issues such as stigma and nihilism and health equity, to tactical approaches including state coalition efforts and policy initiatives. The full membership gathers annually to track progress, understand emerging trends, and accelerate new roundtable activities.

  • ACS NCCRT releases new guidebook to encourage on-time colorectal cancer screening

    Resource highlights lead time messaging tactics for those under the age of 45.​

    The ACS National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable (ACS NCCRT) has released  its latest resource, Lead Time Messaging Guidebook: A Tool to Encourage On-Time Colorectal Cancer Screening, a valuable tool for partners and advocates in the field.

    This guidebook is intended to provide team members with tools to promote on-time colorectal cancer (CRC) screening through lead time messaging. Learning about CRC screening before the recommended screening age of 45 (for those of average risk), can help people feel empowered to prioritize getting screened for CRC as soon as they are eligible. On-time CRC screenings result in more cancers being prevented or caught early when they are more easily treatable.

    This guide supports and catalyzes current efforts to increase CRC screening rates. It is a culmination of findings from ACS NCCRT messaging-related research, relevant information from ACS NCCRT signature resources, and is driven by concerning data reflecting increases in CRC in younger populations.

    In the guidebook, American Cancer Society team members can find:

    • Key definitions and screening recommendations,
    • National data on CRC screening rates,
    • Recommended lead time messages,
    • Helpful tactics to use for effective messaging, and
    • Information and messages for those with a family history.

  • Navigation training and credentialing program wraps up pilot phase

    Newly named ACS LION program preparing to launch in January.​

    The American Cancer Society recently wrapped up a successful pilot of its new patient navigation curriculum and credentialing program for non-clinical navigation, which is scheduled to officially launch on Jan. 1, 2024. The pilot included more than 90 people across the country who provide navigation services in a wide variety of settings.

    The new program is designed to ensure the nation’s professional navigators are receiving high-quality training that supports advancement and sustainability of the profession, resulting in comprehensive care for people with cancer and their families. It recently also got an official name, christened the ACS Leadership in Oncology Navigation or ACS LION program.

    Participants reported that the program information was helpful, it directly applied to their role, it enhanced their professional experience, and they would recommend the program to others. Importantly, the program significantly increased participants’ self-reported comprehension of navigation competencies the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) requires for principal illness navigation (PIN) billing. (Changes this year to the CMS Physician Fee Schedule are offering professional non-clinical navigators a sustainable way to get reimbursed for the critical services they provide.)    

    “This training showed me how much ACS really ‘gets’ the myriad ways cancer affects patients and communities and works to offer support at all levels,” one program participant said.

    Another participant said, “The lessons were well organized. I have been in the role of a patient navigator, and it helped me to rethink some of my approaches with patients. I appreciated the practical tools.”

    As the program officially launches in January, dissemination efforts will include webinars with evolving case studies to meet various needs and topics, learning collaboratives, toolkits to support implementation, and Patient Support team member presence at conferences and events to help promote the program.

    What you can do 

    How can ACS team members and volunteers help support this new ACS navigation training and credentialing program?

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