In December 2015 ACCC convened a one-day Supportive Care Summit bringing together leaders from the fields of medical oncology, social work, psychology, nursing, patient navigation, survivorship care and planning, patient advocacy organization. During the day, participants joined in focused discussions to better understand patient needs around these areas, challenges to meeting these needs, and to share solutions offered at their respective institutions.
An outcome from this meeting was creation of a Supportive Care Resources hub of information for cancer care providers on patient navigation, psychosocial distress screening, and cancer survivorship care.
Psychosocial Distress Screening ResourcesSurvivorship Care Plan ResourcesPatient Navigation ResourcesPalliative Care ResourcesCommunication Resources
In 2006 the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM, formerly called the Institute of Medicine) published “From Cancer Patient to Cancer Survivor: Lost in Transition,” and proceedings from a symposium that brought together the American Society for Clinical Oncology (ASCO), National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship (NCCS), and the Institute of Medicine (IOM). This work called attention to gaps in long-term care for patients with cancer and paved the way for quality care for survivors.
In 2008 the NASEM released “Cancer Care for the Whole Patient: Meeting Psychosocial Health Needs,” a call to action to address psychological and social issues that may accompany a cancer diagnosis. As noted by the report, failure to address these concerns “can compromise the effectiveness of health care and thereby adversely affect the health of cancer patients.”
Subsequently, the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer's Cancer Program Standards incorporated Standard 3.1 Patient Navigation Process; Standard 3.2 Psychosocial Distress Screening; Standard 3.3 Survivorship Care Plan. Many of the services that fall under these three standards are commonly referred to as supportive care services. These supportive services that have been recognized as integral to treating the "whole" patient remain, in general, an non-reimbursed component of patient-centered care.
In 2014, ASCO released its first three evidence-based clinical practice guidelines focused on survivorship care. These provided guidance on prevention and management of symptoms experienced by many cancer survivors—neuropathy, fatigue and depression, and anxiety. Today, ASCO offers a Survivorship Care Compendium of tools and resources.
As cancer care continues to evolve so do the supportive care needs of survivors and their families.
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