In fall of 2018, the pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca launched the YOUR Cancer program. The program connects the company’s history of cancer science with the reality that the best cancer care requires more than therapeutics alone. It requires a community. YOUR Cancer aims to convene, engage and highlight the full breadth and depth of the oncology community and recognize those making a difference in the lives of cancer patients and their families.
To offer support, Scientific American Custom Media partnered with AstraZeneca to create the Cancer Community (C2) Awards, which celebrate the people and organizations changing the lives of those affected by cancer. Experts from advocacy organizations, all aspects of healthcare, government, research and beyond nominated the changemakers in cancer care — more than 90 overall in its inaugural year — for four awards: Catalyst for Change, Catalyst for Care, Catalyst for Prcision Medicine and the President’s Award. A panel of judges, all of whom are leaders in the cancer care community, reviewed and scored nominees for all awards, except the President’s Award winner, which was selected by AstraZeneca.
For a first glimpse at the finalists for the Catalyst for Change, Care and Precision Medicine Awards, watch the videos below. Also, stay tuned to learn more about the winners in all categories, which will be announced at an awards celebration on May 2nd, 2019.
Serving the Underserved: Catalyst for Change
Finalists for the Catalyst for Change Award bring the highest quality care to groups of patients that are often overlooked: Dian “CJ” Corneliussen founded METAvivor to bring more attention to metastatic breast cancer; Curmonos provides support for breast cancer patients in underserved Latino communities; and Keith Winfrey, a physician at the New Orleans East Louisiana Community Health Center, extends access to colorectal-cancer screening.
Supporting Patients and Families: Catalyst for Care
Navigating the complex and, at times, taxing world of cancer care is easier because of these finalists: the Centers of Excellence Program of The GO2 Lung Cancer Foundation which brings coordinated, multidisciplinary care to community hospitals; Patricia Goldsmith’s CancerCare which provides free emotional support to anyone impacted by cancer; and John and Christine Lederer, of the Zaching Against Cancer Foundation, encouraging patients to draw on their son Zach’s memory and strength to keep fighting.
Making Care More Personal: Catalyst for Precision Medicine
Better understanding the genetic and molecular features of a person’s particular cancer ensures that patients get the right treatment and the right time for their type of disease. That is the goal of these finalists: Barbara Gitlitz of Keck Medicine of USC and Geoffrey Oxnard of the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, who studied lung cancer in people under the age of 40; the ROS1der patient advocacy group for people with this genetic mutation; and Roman Yelensky of Gritstone Oncology, who has worked on the clinical implementation of next generation sequencing.
For more about the Cancer Community Awards, visit YourCancer.org.