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Christine Almocera
Director, Marketing


ACCC Honors Clinical Research Team and Oncologist with National Awards at 34th National Oncology Conference

Nine cancer programs honored for their demonstrated creativity, innovation, and teamwork in delivering cancer care

Rockville, Md.—The Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC) bestowed several national awards to members of the oncology community who have distinguished themselves in service to patients, the community, and the profession. Awards presented at the ACCC 34th National Oncology Conference in Nashville, Tenn., included the David King Community Clinical Scientist Award, the Clinical Research Award, the Annual Achievement Award, and the seventh annual ACCC Innovator Awards.

This year’s David King Community Clinical Scientist Award was presented to the Sanford Health Clinical Research Team from Sioux Falls, S.D. The award recognizes active community clinical research leaders who have demonstrated leadership in the development, participation, and evaluation of clinical studies, and/or are active in the development of new screening, risk assessment, treatment, or supportive care programs for cancer patients.

Sanford Health, an integrated health system headquartered in the Dakotas, is known as one of the largest rural, not-for-profit healthcare system in the U.S. and provides more than 350 ongoing clinical studies, 150 open clinical trials, and 24 open immunotherapy clinical trials that address 11 types of cancer. Sanford firmly believes that clinical trials are not only the way to deliver the most advanced care to its patients, they are also the critical vehicle to gather data and evidence to form and direct the cancer treatments of tomorrow. "It is such an honor to present this year’s award to the Sanford Health Clinical Research Team, who is doing such amazing work to advance science and develop new treatments for better patient outcomes,” said Mark S. Soberman, MD, MBA, FACS, ACCC President.

Last year, Sanford Health was awarded the ACCC Institute for Clinical Immuno-Oncology (ICLIO) Innovator Award for its work in advancing Immuno-Oncology in the Community Setting, and this year they are also being honored as a 30-year ACCC Cancer Program Member.

The Clinical Research Award is given annually to an individual whose research has significantly and positively impacted the oncology patient, family, or community. ACCC was pleased to present this year’s award to Raymond Osarogiagbon, MBBS, FACP. He is the Director of the Multidisciplinary Thoracic Oncology Program at the Baptist Cancer Center in Memphis, which serves a region with some of the highest lung cancer incidence rates in the U.S. Dr. Osarogiagbon also serves as the Director of the Thoracic Oncology Research Group of the Baptist Cancer Center and is the Principal Investigator of two major ongoing projects, one of which is “Building a Multidisciplinary Bridge Across the Quality Chasm in Thoracic Oncology.” “We are inspired by Dr. Osarogiagbon’s research in improving population-based systems of care, improving accuracy of cancer staging, and evaluating the biologic drivers of outcome differences in potentially curable lung cancer. We look forward to the outcomes and key learnings from his projects,” said Mark S. Soberman, MD, MBA, FACS, ACCC President.

The Annual Achievement Award was presented to Barbara L. McAneny, MD, FASCO, MACP, for her pioneering work in value-based care. Dr. McAneny is the first oncologist to be elected as President of the American Medical Association. Details on this award are available here.

The seventh annual ACCC Innovator Awards were also presented, recognizing forward-thinking ACCC Cancer Program Members who have created replicable solutions to improve the access, quality, and value of patient care. This stellar program recognized the following cancer programs for demonstrating creativity, innovation, and teamwork in delivering cancer care:

Advocate Medical Group
Park Ridge, Ill.
Turning on the Light Switch: A Model Immunotherapy Program at an Oncology Practice—ICLIO Innovator Award

The nursing team at Advocate Medical Group initiated a program that aimed to provide consistent, optimal care for patients receiving immunotherapy. Components include patient and staff education materials, peer-to-peer training, policy and procedure guidelines, toxicity assessment tools, and EHR documentation templates. The result is the creation of tools and procedures that standardized and improved care of immunotherapy patients.
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Aurora Health Care, Aurora Cancer Care
Milwaukee, Wisc.
Now Playing! Drug-Specific Videos Improve Chemotherapy Patient Education

To ensure consistent, systemwide chemotherapy education for patients, a multidisciplinary team at Aurora Health Care created a library of 125+ drug-specific videos. Through visual and auditory learning, patients receive consistent factual education that can be viewed on-demand and shared with caregivers. These videos can be easily reassembled, updated, and replaced as needed. The program has resulted in increased satisfaction, engagement, and communication for patients and caregivers.
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Carolinas HealthCare System, Levine Cancer Institute
Charlotte, N.C.
Wheels Up—Bringing Lung Cancer Education & Screening to Rural Patients

The Levine Cancer Institute mobile lung CT unit hits the road providing access to lung cancer education and treatment, integrating technology, nurse navigation, and brick-and-mortar medical facilities and staff for patients in the rural Carolinas. This innovative model to reach at-risk populations in their home communities is slated to improve health equity and access to care, leading to earlier intervention and treatment for lung cancer patients, with the goal of reducing the number of stage III and IV diagnoses.
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Duke Cancer Institute
Durham, N.C.
Come Together: A Health Disparities & Equity Cancer Program Built on Community Collaboration

Duke Cancer Institute, through the Office of Health Equity and Disparities, developed a five-step roadmap for conducting health assessments that aims to reduce cancer disparities and improve population health through community partnerships. Components of their health disparities program include the creation of an engaged and diverse community advisory council; robust and collaborative health assessments; programs, services, and research priorities; aligned partnership programming; and programmatic evaluations and outcome measures.
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Loma Linda University Cancer Center
Loma Linda, Calif.
A Perfect Fit: Mentoring Experienced RNs to Meet Oncology Clinic Demand

Loma Linda University Cancer Center created this program to encourage career development and specialization in oncology as a strategy to minimize staffing shortages. From behavioral interviewing to identify RNs with the appropriate skill set to classroom lectures, written testing, self-study, and a clinical practicum with a chemotherapy-skilled RN mentor, this program offers key strategies to recruit and train experienced non-oncology RNs. Outcomes include retaining 86% of their mentor program graduates and 100% of the program participants attaining the Oncology Nursing Society Chemotherapy/Biotherapy Provider Card.
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Northwest Medical Specialties, PLLC
Tacoma, Wash.
Designed for Success: Using a Research-Based Approach to Meet OCM Requirements

Northwest Medical Specialties, PLLC, leveraged its Clinical Trial Management System to organize, implement, track progress, and reconcile completion of quality measures required under the Oncology Care Model (OCM). Creating an “OCM Study” control group has allowed this practice to easily identify problem areas within this patient group and implement solutions to improve treatment and care among their entire patient population.
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Penn Medicine Virtua Cancer Program
Voorhees, N.J.
Beyond the Classroom: Students Improve Access to Supportive Care Services

Virtua Cancer Program expanded their oncology services at no cost by partnering with Masters in Social Work students in their community. The student volunteers provide meditation to the infusion patients and have increased supportive care patient encounters by 133% overall. The students have also been instrumental in supporting and growing a program for patients with advanced cancer that offers emotional support around advanced directives and end-of-life discussions.
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University of Alabama at Birmingham Comprehensive Cancer Center
Birmingham, Ala.
Patient Care Connect—Lay Navigators Improve Quality & Reduce Cost of Care

Trained lay navigators at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Comprehensive Cancer Center developed a program aimed at reducing the cost of cancer care while improving quality and patient satisfaction. Outcomes include reducing ER visits, hospital admissions, and ICU admissions—more for navigated patients—than non-navigated patients. Patient satisfaction with the navigation program was high, with 89% of navigated patients reporting that they would recommend the program to another cancer survivor.
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University of South Alabama, Mitchell Cancer Institute
Mobile, Ala.
An Acuity Tool to Optimize Nurse Navigation Caseloads

Mitchell Cancer Institute developed and implemented an Acuity Scale Tool to provide their Clinical Care Coordinators with a standardized method for assessing the level of services and care coordination for patients, allowing for appropriate allocation of navigation time, resources, and caseload capacity based on combined patient acuity. This multi-purpose, simple to use, cost-effective tool is utilized for staffing, time management, quality and process improvements across the organization, resulting in a combination of efficient healthcare delivery with more personalized, comprehensive care for patients.
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About the Association of Cancer Care Centers

The Association of Cancer Care Centers (ACCC) is the leading education and advocacy organization for the cancer care community. Founded in 1974, ACCC is a powerful network of 30,000 multidisciplinary practitioners from 1,700 hospitals and practices nationwide. As advances in cancer screening and diagnosis, treatment options, and care delivery models continue to evolve - so has ACCC - adapting its resources to meet the changing needs of the entire oncology care team. For more information, visit Follow us on social media; read our blog, ACCCBuzz; tune in to our CANCER BUZZ podcast; and view our CANCER BUZZ TV channel.