Cancer Program Fundamentals / Community Engagement for Health

Community Engagement for Health


For programs seeking accreditation from the Commission on Cancer, a community needs assessment must be conducted once during the three-year accreditation cycle. 


The Commission on Cancer has a three-year accreditation cycle. To satisfy CoC Standard 3.1., the cancer facility's cancer committee must conduct a Community Needs Assessment (CNA) at least once every three years during the accreditation cycle. The cancer committee sets scope and selects the tools for completing the CNA, and participates in the assessment and evaluation of the findings. Local, county, or state cancer-related information may be used in gathering data. To complete the CNA, the cancer committee can work with their organization's outreach and/or marketing departments, as well as with community organizations. 


American College of Surgeons, Commission on Cancer (CoC) Cancer Program Standards, 2016, Standard 3.1

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ACCC Member Program:  St. Luke’s Cancer Center, St. Luke's University Health Network, Bethlehem, Pa.

St. Luke's University Health Network is an nonprofit health network that serves 10 counties in eastern Pennsylvania and western New Jersey. The network is composed of 7 hospitals and more than 270 outpatient facilities. St. Luke's cancer program accredited by the CoC as an Integrated Network Cancer Program—meaning they have multiple facilities providing integrated cancer care and comprehensive services. 

Learn how the St. Luke's University Health Network benefited when the Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA) team preparing the the CHNA required by the 2010 Affordable Care Act, and the Community Needs Assessment (CNA) team preparing the CNA required to satisfy Commission on Cancer Cancer Program accreditation requirements were able to connect so that the cancer program was able to use evidence-based processes and best practices similar to those used by the CHNA team. By integrating and aligning these assessment processes and through collaboration, the health network's CHNA  and CNA implementation goals were in alignment. Read the full story.