COA Joins Cancer Care, Research and Advocacy Leaders at the Biden Cancer Summit

September 24, 2018

Cancer Leaders from Around the World Meet to Drive Cancer Urgency

Leaders in cancer care, research, and advocacy gathered in Washington DC last week to attend the invitation-only Biden Cancer Summit, hosted by the Biden Cancer Initiative. The Summit bought together over 300 cancer leaders including patients, advocates, providers, and other industry leaders. Among those in attendance was Rose Gerber, Community Oncology Alliance Director of Patient Advocacy.

Concurrent with the Summit in Washington DC, 450 Biden Cancer Community Summits took place in all 50 states across America and in Canada, Nigeria, and Kenya. Member chapters of the Community Oncology Alliance Patient Advocacy Network (CPAN), Fort Wayne Oncology and Hematology, Fort Wayne, Indiana, and New England Cancer Specialists, Scarborough, Maine, held local Biden Cancer Summits.

The Summit began with a keynote welcome from Dr. Jill Biden, Biden Cancer Initiative Co-Chair, and featured “spotlight” stories of heroism and courage in the face of cancer. Stories of purpose, resilience and strength came from community activists to Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, WWE legends to football players, chief medical officers to science phenoms.  The Summit attendees delved into the minds and hearts of people ranging from a cellist to the head of the FDA’s Oncology Review office. People who have survived cancer or lost a loved one narrated how cancer changed the trajectory of their lives. The Summit concluded with Vice President Joseph R. Biden, Jr., Biden Cancer Initiative Co-Chair, leading a three-part cancer town hall that focused on prevention, early detection and diagnosis; research and innovation; and care and survivorship.

The Summit illuminated the emerging national narrative of how people turn their cancer fear into cancer fierce, told through their commitments; new efforts and collaborations – coming from across industries and sectors; and inspiration by the call to action from the co-chairs Joe and Jill Biden.  They, like so many, have endured their worst nightmare and risen above it to lead a movement to double the rate of progress against cancer.

“It was an honor to be among the invited attendees at the Biden Cancer Summit,” said Gerber, herself a cancer survivor. “My participation allowed me to be a part of cancer leadership contributing to the Summit. The Biden Cancer Initiative and the Biden Cancer Summit reflect the remarkable people and organizations doing incredible things to improve the cancer experience for every cancer patient. CPAN and COA, as strong advocates for community cancer care, are supporters of the Biden Cancer Initiative and the benefits it can bring to all patients through coordinated research efforts and by protecting and fostering access to local, affordable cancer care.”

The Summit agenda featured working sessions on doubling the rate of research progress, changing the culture of cancer care, how to turn ideas in action and Vice President Biden’s reiterating the commitment to ending cancer as we know it.