The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention awarded the GW Cancer Institute a $4.25 million grant last month to help improve the health outcomes and quality of life for cancer survivors.
In partnership with the American Cancer Society, the five-year grant will finance the creation of a National Cancer Resource Center, which will offer support to cancer patients and their families.
The grant will allow the two organizationsto improve awareness, support and clinical care for cancer survivors.
Mandi Chapman, director of GWCI’s Office of Cancer Survivorship, said the partnership between an academic medical center and a national nonprofit will help further progress in the field of cancer survivorship.
“The grant will allow us to share our clinical and training expertise to improve long term follow-up care for cancer survivors and health outcomes of cancer survivors on a national scale,” Chapman said.
GWCI will host the National Cancer Resource Center’s annual fellowship program, through which five fellows each year will receive training in education and sustainability to improve care for cancer survivors in communities across the country that are lacking in care.
“This new kind of partnership at the national level will accelerate our ability to appropriately care for cancer survivors locally and nationally,” Chapman said.
The two organizations will collaborate to develop a strategic plan to improve the surveillance of cancer survivor outcomes nationwide.
The institute’s model of patient navigation – a strategy that seeks to remove obstacles to health care accessibility, particularly for lower-income patients – will be employed at a national level, improving the support systems of cancer survivors and increasing access to programs and appropriate, timely care.
Dr. Steven Patierno, executive director of the GWCI, said the grant builds on the partnerships the institute has already established.
A collaboration with Children’s National Medical Center, the GW Medical Faculty Associates and the GW Center for Integrative Medicine allowed GWCI to launch a citywide clinical program for cancer survivors. The partnership with the American Cancer Society will bring these practices to a national level.
“This moves us into the national limelight,” Patierno said. “It takes our navigation and survivorship models of care and disseminates them nationally to help other communities care for cancer survivors across the country.”