Precision medicine (also known as personalized medicine) uses information about a person’s genes, proteins, and environment to prevent, diagnose, and treat cancer. Precision medicine includes the use of biomarkers, molecular testing, and targeted therapies to deliver a personalized approach to cancer therapy through the use of molecular and genomic information about individual cancers. The National Cancer Institute (NCI) defines precision medicine as “discovering unique therapies that treat an individual’s cancer based on the specific abnormalities of their tumor.”
The Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC) is partnering with the American College of Chest Physicians (CHEST), the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC), and the LUNGevity Foundation on a national initiative to identify and provide guidance on key issues related to delivering optimal care for patients diagnosed with stages III or IV non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) across different practice settings.
As a first step in the Fostering Excellence in Care and Outcomes for Patients with Stage III and IV NSCLC initiative, ACCC conducted a survey to better understand the barriers and operational challenges in providing care for this patient population. Survey questions addressed diagnosis, treatment, care coordination, and communication within the interdisciplinary team caring for patients with locally advanced and late-stage NSCLC.
Informed by the survey results, the project’s Steering Committee will guide the selection of six cancer programs to serve as process improvement sites. Facilitated by ACCC, the six selected sites will create and execute process improvement models aimed at overcoming identified barriers to excellence in care for patients with these NSCLC stages. The models tested will be applicable across care settings. Results will be shared with the wider oncology community.
As the precision medicine landscape evolves, ACCC supports the multidisciplinary cancer care team with education in the following areas:
Integration of Pathology with the Cancer Care Team
Virtual Molecular Tumor Boards Webinar Series
Molecular Testing in the Community Setting
Testing and Treating ALK+ Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer
Improving Multidisciplinary Team Communication
NCCN Policy Report: Developments in Molecular Testing and Biosimilars (requires login)
Winckworth-Prejsnar K, Nardi EA, Lentz L, et al. NCCN Policy Report: Developments in Molecular Testing and Biosimilars. J Natl Compr Cancer Netw. 2017;15(6):772-782.
Biomarker Tests for Molecularly Targeted Therapies: Key to Unlocking Precision Medicine
Craig LA, Phillips JK, Moses HL. (eds.) Biomarker Tests for Molecularly Targeted Therapies: Key to Unlocking Precision Medicine. Washington, DC: National Academies Press; 2016.
ACCC and CAP TODAY webinar: CAP/AMP/IASLC Guidelines for NSCLC: Current Experience and Future Update Four national thought-leaders examine current guidelines, planned updates, and provide expert feedback on the impact of these guidelines on practices.
This webinar was originally broadcast on Nov. 30, 2016.