Radiation Oncologists P.A. at Christiana Care Health System’s Helen F. Graham Cancer Center is one of only seven community oncology research programs in the country to receive a Clinical Trials Participation Award from the Conquer Cancer Foundation of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO).
The award recognizes Radiation Oncologists P.A. for its work on improving cancer care through its high-quality clinical trials program. Radiation Oncologist Jon Strasser, M.D., accepted the award June 2 at the ASCO annual meeting in Chicago, Ill.
In 2012, 24 percent of patients enrolled in clinical trials at the Graham Cancer Center. This number is one of the highest accrual rates into cancer clinical trials in the U.S., far above the national average of 4 percent.
The Graham Cancer Center currently has more than 100 ongoing clinical trials in different cancer types, including breast, central nervous system/brain, gastrointestinal, genitourinary, gynecologic, head & neck, hematologic, melanoma, sarcoma and thoracic.
“The ASCO award is a recognition of the hard-working research nurses and radiation oncologists at the Helen F. Graham Cancer Center who are committed to delivering cutting-edge treatment to our patients,” said Nicholas J. Petrelli, M.D., Bank of America endowed medical director. “I know the team shares the award with the patients, because without them the award wouldn’t be possible.”
“As physicians, our number-one goal is to partner with our patients to provide the highest quality care possible,” said Christopher Koprowski, M.D., MBA, chair of Radiation Oncology at Christiana Care. “This award is a testament to the heroism of our patients, our dedicated colleagues and the tremendous clinical and research infrastructure at the Helen F. Graham Cancer Center.”
“By participating in clinical trials our patients receive state-of-the-art care from our cancer experts,” said Adam Raben, M.D., research director. “For many patients, clinical trials provide the best means for accessing a promising new cancer therapy.”
Of the 1.3 million people diagnosed with cancer this year, only 3 to 5 percent will participate in cancer clinical trials.
Clinical trials are research studies designed to evaluate whether a new treatment or procedure is better than the current standard of care. Thanks in large part to the knowledge gained through clinical trials, today two-thirds of cancer patients survive at least five years after diagnosis, compared with half only in the 1970s.
ASCO established The Conquer Cancer Foundation of ASCO Clinical Trials Participation Award in 2003 as part of the Clinical Trials Task Force’s strategic plan to increase clinical trial awareness and participation by physicians. The award recognizes and promotes high-quality clinical research sites in order to further the impact of oncology research and has been supported by the Coalition of Cancer Cooperative Groups through the Conquer Cancer Foundation for 11 consecutive years.
This year’s recipients earned awards based on several factors, including patient enrollment to clinical trials. Receiving special consideration were practices that increased clinical-trial participation among underrepresented populations and those that use innovative techniques to overcome barriers to the enrollment of cancer patients in clinical trials.
In addition to being a community leader in providing patients access to clinical trials, Radiation Oncologists P.A. offers patients cancer care and treatment from a compassionate, skilled, dedicated professional staff. The practice also provides patients and their families access to nutritional, counseling and psychosocial support services.
The Conquer Cancer Foundation is working to create a world free from the fear of cancer by funding breakthrough research, by sharing knowledge with physicians and patients worldwide and by supporting initiatives to ensure that all people have access to high-quality cancer care. Working in close collaboration with a global network of top scientists and clinicians, as well as leading advocacy and research organizations, the foundation draws on the passion and expertise of the more than 30,000 oncology professionals who are members of its affiliate organization, ASCO.