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Quality Improvement in Breast Cancer Through BRCA Testing: Grants Announced

To support quality improvement (QI) projects in breast cancer, the Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC) has partnered with Pfizer Global Medical Grants to award more than $1.8 million in funding to 15 projects that are aimed at improving the quality of breast cancer patient care. The projects will focus on conducting quality improvement (QI) initiatives that support increasing the rates of BRCA testing for patients with early stage or metastatic breast cancer.

Grants proposals were solicited through a Request for Proposal (RFP) issued by ACCC together with Pfizer Global Medical Grants with the intent of funding QI initiatives that fully integrate BRCA testing into patient care plans in order to help inform the treatment decision-making process.  

BRCA mutational status can add a valuable perspective when determining optimal treatment strategies and engaging breast cancer patients in shared decision-making. However, in a recent ACCC survey of community oncology practitioners, more than 80 percent of respondents reported that 50 percent or fewer of their patients with early or metastatic breast cancer have ever had germline BRCA mutation testing. The survey revealed both patient- and provider-related barriers to BRCA testing, including institutional barriers. 
Access the Survey Summary Report 

The grant awards are providing an opportunity for community oncology programs to implement initiatives that will address barriers to counseling and testing. The grantees will utilize innovative approaches to extend best practices to a much larger patient population, including underserved minority patient groups. As part of the initiatives, sites will review their progress and in particular, evaluate how changes in testing practices impact treatment decision-making.

The following 15 institutions were selected for grant funding:
  • Anne Arundel Medical Center, Inc. Annapolis, MD
  • Cabell Huntington Hospital Foundation, Huntington, WV
  • Christiana Care Health System, Newark, DE
  • Franciscan Health Foundation, Mishawaka, IN
  • Kalispell Regional Medical Center, Kalispell, MT
  • Maine Medical Center, Portland, ME
  • Northside Hospital Cancer Institute, Atlanta, GA
  • NW Medical Specialties, Tacoma, WA
  • Oncology Hematology Care, Inc., Cincinnati, OH
  • Southeastern Regional Medical Center, Lumberton, NC
  • St. Vincent Hospital, Indianapolis, IN
  • The Outer Banks Hospital, Nags Head, NC
  • University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, KS
  • University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Health, Inc., Bel Air, MD
  • White Memorial Medical Center Charitable Foundation, Los Angeles, CA

The projects will launch in January 2019 and will continue for two years. In early 2020, ACCC will begin sharing the results from these QI projects.

Questions? Please contact the BRCA Project Coordinator.

Supporter

Supported by a grant from Pfizer, Inc.