The CoC Source - August 31, 2011
(Print All Articles)

“Use of Radioactive Iodine for Thyroid Cancer” Journal of the American Medical Association, Vol. 306, No. 7, Aug. 17, 2011

In this recently published study, researchers looked at data from 189,219 patients diagnosed with thyroid cancer between 1990 and 2008, as reported to the National Cancer Data Base, which captures about 85 percent of all thyroid cancers diagnosed in the U.S. Thyroid cancer is currently one of the 10 most common cancers in the U.S. and is expected to become even more common in the next decade as more small and early stage cancers are uncovered.

Radioactive iodine (RAI) following surgery to remove the thyroid is known to be an effective treatment for advanced or high-risk thyroid cancer that is likely to re-occur. But patients with small, low-risk disease often have an excellent prognosis without RAI. Investigators found that RAI treatment is being used more frequently overall—56 percent of patients in 2008 compared to 40 percent of patients in 1990. The size and severity of the tumor did impact a patient’s likelihood to have RAI, accounting for about 21 percent of the variation in care. Other factors played a role, such as whether the hospital saw a high volume of thyroid cancer patients.. But 29 percent of the variation between whether patients received RAI was attributable to hospital factors that could not be explained.

The authors hypothesize that the increased utilization of RAI may be spurred by the increased detection of the disease; however, the relative severity of the disease does not appear to be a sole determining factor of RAI use. While there is a clear role for the use of RAI among patients with advanced-stage, well-differentiated thyroid cancers, the findings from this study would indicate that both the underuse of RAI among high-risk patients and overuse among low-risk patients are occurring in hospitals across the U.S. The observed variation in RAI use suggests that where thyroid cancer patients go for care plays a large role in whether they receive radioactive iodine treatment, and is the subject of ongoing investigations.

Rapid Quality Reporting System: Enrollment Starts September 19

Following extensive development and testing with seven Alpha test programs and 65 Beta test sites, the Rapid Quality Reporting System (RQRS) is ready for expansion to all CoC accredited programs.

RQRS enrollment is:

  • Voluntary
  • Limited to CoC-accredited cancer programs
  • Managed entirely online through CoC Datalinks
  • Opening at noon CDT, September 19, 2011

RQRS allows cancer programs to track adherence to National Quality Forum-endorsed accountability and surveillance measures in real clinical time and represents a significant extension to the retrospective quality of patient care reporting tools currently maintained and supported by the CoC. The adoption of RQRS may require changes in registry operations, and most of the issues that should be considered by potential enrollees were summarized in an article published in the spring 2011 edition of the Journal of Registry Management.

To ensure maximum participation and benefit within programs enrolling in RQRS, the CoC requires each of the following individuals to complete the enrollment process: the Cancer Committee Chair, Cancer Liaison Physician, Cancer Program Administrator, and Hospital Registrar. These individuals must use their own CoC Datalinks usernames and passwords to complete the RQRS registration steps.

All programs interested in enrollment should visit the RQRS webpage at for more information; in particular, review the following posted documents to become familiar with RQRS in advance of enrollment:
  • RQRS: Getting Started
  • RQRS: Navigation Guide
  • RQRS: Data Submission

Or view the On-Demand webinar on the CoC Online Education Portal titled: "Move to the Fast Track: Getting Your Cancer Program Ready for the Rapid Quality Reporting System (RQRS)."

In preparation for using RQRS, workstations must be running:
  • Internet Explorer 8 or higher
  • Google Chrome 13.0 or higher
  • Mozilla Firefox 3.6 or higher
  • Safari 5.2 or higher

For questions, contact

Applications Being Accepted - American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer Surgical Oncology Scholar-in-Residence Program

The American College of Surgeons (ACoS) Commission on Cancer (CoC) is offering a two-year fellowship in surgical oncology outcomes and health services research beginning July 1, 2012.  The ACoS CoC has one position available every two years for a surgical resident who has completed two or three years of clinical training in the United States or Canada. The fellow will work within the Cancer Programs Department of the ACoS to conduct clinical research and further the research agenda of the CoC’s National Cancer Data Base (NCDB) whose goal is to improve the quality of care for the cancer patient.  The application deadline is November 1, 2011.  

Details about the program can be found on the CoC Web site at  

Program questions and completed applications with supporting documentation should be directed to Connie Bura, Administrative Director of Cancer Programs at the ACoS, at

You Can Still Register for Survey Savvy!

Survey Savvy: World Premiere of the 2012 Patient-Centered Standards
September 15-16, 2011
Renaissance Hollywood Hotel & Spa
Hollywood, CA

Register Now!

The Commission on Cancer has spent nearly two years working closely with our cancer program constituents and CoC member organizations to develop a new set of patient-centered standards which will be implemented by CoC-accredited cancer programs beginning January 1, 2012.

To help our programs prepare for this change, we have redeveloped Survey Savvy to create a dynamic two-day workshop that will include a thorough review of the category changes, eligibility requirements, revised standards, and a focus on the value of the new patient-centered standards.

Our presenters include the experts and key members of the CoC leadership who have helped to develop the 2012 standards. Presenters will describe the rationale for and requirements of each standard, illustrate successful methods for implementation and compliance, and share their own best practice experience with you. All of this valuable information will help assist any cancer program in gaining an edge on a successful survey experience!

In addition to the two-day workshop, we've added a half-day, pre-workshop to introduce interested programs to the Rapid Quality Reporting System (RQRS). A special session is also planned for cancer programs seeking initial CoC-accreditation.

If you are a facility administrator or cancer program administrator, clinician or nurse, pain management or palliative care professional, oncology social worker or clinical trials data manager, cancer committee chair, Cancer Liaison Physician, genetic counselor, or cancer registrar, then this workshop is designed specifically for you.

Seating is very limited, REGISTER today!

ProvenCare® Lung Cancer Collaborative Update

Data collection for the ProvenCare® Lung Cancer Collaborative was initiated on July 1, 2010 with six CoC-accredited facilities:

Duke Raleigh Hospital in Raleigh, NC
Geisinger Health System in Danville, PA
Kern Medical Center in Bakersfield, CA
NorthShore University Health System in Evanston, IL
Northwestern University Medical Center in Chicago, IL
University of Washington Medical Center in Seattle, WA

The purpose of the pilot is to demonstrate that reliable delivery of evidence-based care is feasible for lung cancer surgery in a multi-institutional setting and that such a program can result in improved patient outcomes, reduced complications, and reduced cost.  More than 250 patients have been accrued to the study to date, and in August 2011 an application process was initiated to expand the pilot to additional institutions; 22 of whom have expressed interest.  An article about the project – ProvenCare Lung Cancer: A Multi-Institutional Improvement Collaborative - was published in the July online version of CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians

For more information about the project contact Connie Bura, Administrative Director, Cancer Programs, at the ACS, at


CoC Datalinks Access: Security and Maintenance

CoC Datalinks is a central repository for maintaining CoC-accredited cancer program data and information. This password-protected portion of the CoC website enables staff at CoC-accredited programs to access, provide, and utilize facility-specific information and data.

Designated staff persons in the following roles at accredited facilities have access to the CoC Datalinks portal:

  • Cancer Committee Chair
  • Cancer Liaison Physician
  • Cancer Program Administrator
  • Hospital Registrar

Facility staff in the roles above can request access for additional staff in the following roles:

  • Hospital CoRegistrar
  • Datalinks Contact
  • NCDB Tools User

Access to CoC Datalinks is granted per individual, and the ID and Password combination to CoC Datalinks is an individual identifier, NOT a facility-wide access log-in.  Each staff person in one of the roles listed above has a unique log-in to access the CoC Datalinks portal. 

For security purposes and to protect facility data, User IDs and Passwords are not to be shared. The CoC is not responsible for the unauthorized release or sharing of log-in information and data by any CoC Datalinks user.

For the security of your facility, it is important to ensure that the information listed in the Facility and Staff Contacts section of CoC Datalinks is current and accurate as it directly correlates with the CoC Datalinks access roles. Log into CoC Datalinks and select the Facility and Staff Contacts application from the Activity Menu to review and update CoC Datalinks users at your facility. If you want to add additional CoC Datalinks users not already listed in the Facility and Staff Contacts section, complete and submit the CoC Datalinks User Request Form located on the CoC Datalinks log-in page.

Important notes about updating CoC Datalinks users:

  1. Datalinks Contact and NCDB Tools User roles are not listed in the Facility and Staff Contacts section of CoC Datalinks. E-mail to obtain a full listing for your facility.

  2. In the event of the termination of a user, it is the responsibility of the user or cancer program leadership to contact the CoC at so that the user can be inactivated. Note that when you update contact information for the facility or staff in CoC Datalinks, the CoC internal records are not immediately updated. E-mail with all staff changes.

  3. “Primary Contact Person” in the Facility and Staff Contacts application is not an access role.  This field is only used for survey notification and surveyor contact.

Questions? Contact

Annual Update Period Extended

As part of the transition to the 2012 Standards, a new Survey Application Record (SAR) will be introduced next year to retain a historical record of program activity and the current SAR will eventually be phased out.  We have extended the deadline to October 31, 2011 for completing all standards and tables in the current SAR. An initial e-mail notification describing the SAR Annual Update process was sent to all accredited programs on June 27, 2011, and a reminder e-mail notification was sent on August 15, 2011.
The Annual Update is active from July 1  through September 30, 2011 (as noted, extended to October 31).  The SAR is accessible from CoC Datalinks at

We are requiring that your cancer program complete and/or update ALL program activity and information in the SAR for 2009, 2010, and 2011 (through June 30, 2011).  This includes all standards, the Cancer Liaison Physician Activity Report, Facility Information Profile System (FIPS) - posting and validating sections relevant to program resources and services, as well as uploading of required and appropriate survey documentation for each year (follow the required pre-survey documentation list).

Note that programs scheduled for survey or that have been surveyed in 2011 are also required to participate in the Annual Update.

The 2011 SAR will remain open for program use after the archive takes place (October 31) and we encourage you to continually update the SAR after this date as a record-keeping tool to document program activities as they occur.
Questions about the SAR or the Annual Update should be submitted to  Questions regarding your CoC Datalinks user ID and password should be submitted to

Highlighting the 2012 Standards—Eligibility Requirements

The second group of eligibility requirements focuses on the clinical services that are provided.  These range from diagnostic imaging and radiation and systemic treatment through supportive care that is provided both during and after treatment.  Most of the service-related eligibility requirements are already familiar to CoC-accredited cancer programs.  Cancer programs have provided information about these services through the SAR for evaluation at the time of survey as well as for display in the CoC Hospital Locator

Let’s individually examine each of these requirements

E6: Diagnostic Imaging
The full scope of diagnostic imaging services are provided to patients with cancer who are diagnosed and treated at CoC-accredited programs.  Some services may be provided through referral to another hospital or freestanding facility.  Information about the type of service and the location where this is provided (on-site at the facility or by referral) is indicated in the SAR.

Patient safety is an issue of primary concern.  Each location that provides diagnostic services follows policies or procedures that ensure that diagnostic procedures are safely performed. 

The CoC-accredited program obtains documentation of standard QA policies or procedures from the locations most commonly used for referral.  This is shared with the CoC each year.

E7: Radiation Oncology Services
CoC-accredited programs provide access to the full scope of radiation oncology treatment services to patients with cancer.  In some instances, patients may be referred to another hospital or freestanding facility to receive radiation oncology treatment. 

The radiation oncology service location should be accredited by an appropriate organization including the American College of Radiology/American Society for Radiation Oncology or American College of Radiation Oncology.  Accreditation ensures that treatment is performed safely.  CoC-accredited programs are encouraged to refer patients to locations that are accredited.

When the radiation oncology service location is not accredited, standard QA policies and procedures are followed to ensure patient safety.  This includes patient specific policies that confirm patient identity as well as machine-specific QA which ensures proper dosing.

The CoC-accredited program obtains documentation of accreditation or confirmation of standard QA policies and procedures from the locations most commonly used for referral.  This is shared with the CoC each year.

Information about the type of radiation oncology service and the location where this is provided (on-site at the facility or by referral) is indicated in the SAR.

E8: Systemic Therapy Services
Systemic therapy includes the administration of chemotherapeutic, biologic, and immunotherapeutic agents.  This treatment can be provided while the patient is hospitalized, in an outpatient infusion center, or in a physician’s office.  Information about the type of service and the location where this is provided (on-site at the facility or by referral) is indicated in the SAR.

Adequate facilities to provide care, trained nurses, and policies or procedures are essential to ensuring that care is provided safely.  Standards and guidelines developed by nationally recognized organizations are to be used when formulating policies or procedures and training and assessing staff.

The CoC-accredited program obtains documentation of standard QA policies and procedures from the on-site locations as well as facility owned locations and physician offices where treatment is supervised by a member of the medical staff. This is shared with the CoC each year.

E9: Clinical Trial Information
The CoC-accredited program encourages participation in cancer-related clinical trials by informing patients about the importance of clinical trials and clinical trials that are available to them.

The method for providing information is set forth in a policy or procedure which is shared with the CoC each year.

E10: Psychosocial Services
Psychosocial services are an essential component to cancer treatment and help patients with cancer address physical, social, and supportive needs.  These services may be available on-site at the program or provided by referral to other facilities or community-based agencies.  A process is used to inform patients about these services and to provide or refer them for care.

The process is shared with the CoC each year.  Information about the types of psychosocial services and the location where these are provided (on-site at the facility or by referral) is indicated in the SAR.

E11: Rehabilitation Services

Rehabilitation services are another essential component to cancer care.  These services help patients return to normal activities.  A policy or procedure ensures patient access to these services which can be provided on-site at the CoC-accredited program or by referral to another hospital or freestanding facility. 

The policy or procedure to access rehabilitation services is shared with the CoC each year.  Information about the types of rehabilitation services and the location where these are provided (on-site at the facility or by referral) is indicated in the SAR.

E12: Nutritional Services
The final eligibility requirement is new and addresses another important area of cancer care.  Patients with cancer need safe and effective nutrition to facilitate recovery from treatment and promote a good quality of life.  In some cases, patients may be referred to another hospital or freestanding facility to receive adequate nutritional services.

The policy or procedure to access nutrition services is shared with the CoC each year.  Information about the types and scope of nutrition services and the location where these are provided (on-site at the facility or by referral) is indicated in the SAR.

Next month – Chapter 1: Program Management

Cancer Liaison Physician Outstanding Performance Awards

Each year the Cancer Liaison Program presents the Outstanding Performance Award to Cancer Liaison Physicians (CLPs) who go above and beyond the scope of their duties. The Outstanding Performance Award recognizes individuals who have proven excellence in the following area(s):

    • Improving the quality of care delivered at a CoC-accredited facility
    • Contributing to the accreditation status of the cancer program
    • Exceeding CLP expectations to strengthen the cancer program
    • Demonstrating cancer control leadership in the community
    • Serving as a champion and role model for other members of the cancer program team

    CLPs are nominated for the award by their State Chair, cancer committee chair, or their facility’s registrar.

    Congratulations to the 2010 Cancer Liaison Physician Outstanding Performance Awardees:

    David R. Byrd, MD, FACS
    Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, Seattle, WA

    Arnold Conforti, MD, FACS

    Medical Center of Central Georgia, Macon, GA

    Stephen Dick, MD, MPH

    Avera Queen of Peace, Mitchell, SD

    Graca M. Dores, MD, MPH

    VA Medical Center, Oklahoma City, OK

    Gregory Engel, MD, FACS

    UPMC Hamot, Erie, PA

    Sheryl Gabram, MD, FACS

    Grady Memorial Hospital, Atlanta, GA

    Kenneth Graffeo, MD, FACS

    Grady Memorial Hospital, Delaware, OH

    George Hnatiuk, MD

    Oakwood Hospital & Medical Center-Dearborn, Dearborn, MI

    Mary Jane Houlihan, MD

    Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA

    Bradley Kramer, MD

    Sky Lakes Medical Center, Klamath Falls, OR

    Holly Mason, MD, FACS

    Baystate Medical Center, Springfield, MA

    Leo T. McCallum, MD, FACS

    Metrowest Medical Center, Framingham, MA

    Lee Moore, MD

    Cookeville Regional Medical Center, Cookeville, TN

    Michael Peyser, MD

    Riverside Regional Medical Center, Newport News, VA

    Carlo Porcaro, MD

    Saint Michael’s Medical Center, Bloomfield, NJ

    Melvin Reed, MD, FACP

    Crittenton Hospital Medical Center, Leonard, MI

    Alexandra Reichman, MD

    Rideout Memorial Hospital, Marysville, CA

    Michael Rotkis, MD, FACS

    Saint Joseph Regional Medical Center, Elkhart, IN

    Scott Steinmetz, MD, FACS

    Upper Chesapeake Medical Center, Bel Air, MD

    Christine Teal, MD

    George Washington University Hospital, Washington, DC

    Cancer Liaison Physician Breakfast Meeting at Clinical Congress to Be Videotaped

    This year’s Cancer Liaison Physician (CLP) Breakfast Meeting will be held on Monday, October 24, 2011, at the Hilton San Francisco Union Square Hotel, from 7-8:45 am. For CLPs who are unable to attend, this year’s meeting will be videotaped and will be available for viewing on the CoC website the afternoon of October 24. More details are forthcoming!

    Revised State Chair Toolkit Now Available

    The revised State Chair Toolkit reflects the new role of the State Chair and contains other updated information and resources. Hard copies will be mailed to all State Chairs and program leaders, and a PDF version will be posted and available for download on the State Chair Information Board at Best Practices will be posted separately on the State Chair Information Board and will not be part of the revised Toolkit.

    Any questions about the Toolkit can be directed to Carla Amato-Martz at or 312-202-5529.

    CLP Webinar Series

    The Cancer Liaison Physician webinar series consists of five webinars, including an orientation. The next few issues of the CoC Flash will feature descriptions of each of webinars.

    Orientation to the Cancer Liaison Physician Role:  Focus on Improving the Quality of Cancer Care

    The purpose of the orientation webinar is to describe the Cancer Liaison Physician (CLP) role under new Commission on Cancer (CoC) Standard 4.3, which becomes effective January 1, 2012, and how to best implement the role and responsibilities. The presenter, Aaron D. Bleznak, MD, FACS, Chair of the Committee on Cancer Liaison, recounts the history of the Cancer Liaison Program and the recommendations that resulted from the 2009 Cancer Liaison Program Summit.  Dr. Bleznak demonstrates during the 13-minute webinar how the new direction for the CLP will add value to the CoC, the CLP, the cancer program, and the patients.  With the focus on quality improvement, the CLP is expected to use the National Cancer Data Base (NCDB) quality tools to report on the cancer program’s performance relative to certain quality measures and standards. Resources for CLP training on the quality tools and CLP evaluation via the annual Activity Report are discussed. 

    You can access the webinar through the CoC Online Education portal at Additional required CLP webinars on the portal include topics on the liaison role with the American Cancer Society, how to navigate the NCDB tools, and how to analyze and report the data. The webinar series must be completed by January 1, 2012.

    Questions on the webinar series can be directed to

    New State Chairs

    State Chairs provide leadership to the Cancer Liaison Physicians within their state.  They are nominated by the state chapters of the American College of Surgeons and appointed to a three-year term by the Committee on Cancer Liaison.  The CoC would like to introduce the following new state chair(s):

    Darius Desai, MD
    St. Luke’s Hospital & Health Network, Bethlehem, PA
    Pennsylvania-Keystone State Chair
    Effective October 2011

    A Precautionary Tale of an Edit: Date of First Course of Treatment and Treatment Status

    The National Cancer Data Base (NCDB) works closely with other cancer registry standard setters. An example of that cooperation involves an edit that affects cases diagnosed in 2010 or later. In 2009, the National Program of Cancer Registries (NPCR) performed an audit that checked the accuracy of coding for the Facility Oncology Registry Data Standards (FORDS) data item, Date of the First Course of Treatment (NAACCR Item #1270). The auditors discovered substantial failure to follow coding instructions accurately.

    That item requires a date to be entered unless the case was diagnosed at autopsy. The first three instructions for Date of the First Course of Treatment in FORDS: Revised for 2011 read as follows:

    • Record the earliest of the following dates: Date of First Surgical Procedure (NAACCR Item #1200), Date Radiation Started (NAACCR Item #1210), Date Systemic Therapy Started (NAACCR Item #3230), or Date Other Treatment Started (NAACCR Item #1250).
    • If active surveillance or watchful waiting is selected as the first course of treatment (RX Summ-Treatment Status [NAACCR Item #1285] = 2), record the date this decision is made.
    • In cases of nontreatment (RX Summ—Treatment Status [NAACCR Item #1285] = 0) in which a physician decides not to treat a patient or a patient’s family or guardian declines all treatment, the date of first course of treatment is the date this decision is made.

    Except for autopsy-only cases, there must be a date entered for Date of the First Course of Treatment or else the Date 1st Crs RX Flag must indicate that the date is unknown (10 or 12).

    NPCR requested NCDB to sponsor an edit that controls the use of the Date 1st Crs RX Flag based on Class of Case because the items involved are FORDS items. The resulting edit, “RX Summ--Treatm Stat, Date of 1st Crs RX--COC(COC),” checks that:

    For cases for which RX Summ--Treatment Status = 0 (no treatment given), THEN

    1. If Class of Case = 38 (autopsy only), Date of 1st Crs RX Flag must = 11 (autopsy only case)
    2. If Class of Case NOT = 38 (autopsy only), Date of 1st Crs RX Flag must = blank (a date has been coded), 10 (unknown whether any treatment was given), or 12 (a date is applicable, but unknown).
    Because the item RX Summ--Treatment Status was defined for use beginning in 2010, the new edit applies to cases diagnosed starting in 2010. NCDB will collect cases diagnosed in 2010 for the first time in January of 2012. However, because a state central registry reported to NCDB that it was seeing a substantial number of current cases failing the edit, we are bringing it to your attention now so you can review your existing cases for accuracy and make any coding procedure changes that might be necessary for the future.  

    To correct cases that fail the edit, review the date of first course treatment and treatment status as well as the first course treatment date flag and class of case.

    For questions, contact

    NCDB September Submissions

    Remember your September National Cancer Data Base (NCDB) deadlines! Analytic cases diagnosed during 2005 that were added or updated on or after July 1, 2006, and cases diagnosed during 2002 that were added or updated on or after July 1, 2008, must be submitted during September. Also due by September 30 are any corrections for cases diagnosed in 2006. Do not submit cases diagnosed prior to your Reference Date.

    The NCDB Data Submissions Reports for 2011 in Datalinks were updated in early August to reflect 2011 submissions through July. Please review that history for any cases requiring correction, and to make sure everything you intended to submit was received and processed. See History and Edits of Patient Level Data Submission to the NCDB, also in Datalinks, to check the status of current submissions.

    If you have not done so already, please review the Completeness and Default Overuse Report that is linked from the NCDB Data Submissions Reports for 2011. It compares program coding completeness to all NCDB reports for 2009 diagnoses.

    New Webinars Now Available On-Demand

    The following webinars are now available for viewing On-Demand.
    Visit the CoC Online Education Portal and register today to view these webinars.

    Move to the Fast Track: Getting Your Cancer Program Ready for the Rapid Quality Reporting System (RQRS)

    Cost: $50

    Course Overview:
    The Rapid Quality Reporting System (RQRS) is a new program from the NCDB, designed to promote evidenced-based cancer care at the local level in real clinical time.  Participation in this program is voluntary; enrollment will open in the spring of 2011.  This webinar will explain how CoC-accredited cancer programs can get ready to enroll and begin to actively participate in the RQRS.  The enrollment process will be briefly reviewed.  Information gathered from alpha and beta test participants explaining how RQRS participation was managed in individual cancer programs will be reported.  Examples and best practices on how beta test participants came to concurrently abstract breast, colon and rectum cases will be shared, as well as the instructions for data submission.  Select benefits and challenges of RQRS participation will also be described.

    The College of American Pathologists (CAP) Cancer Protocols: Where We’ve Been and Where We’re Going

    Cost: $50

    Course Overview:
    During the past quarter century, significant strides have been made in the delivery of multidisciplinary care to cancer patients.  The medical team includes surgeons, medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, pathologists, radiologists, nurses as well as numerous other ancillary professionals.  As part of this transition, the Cancer Committee of the College of American Pathologists (CAP) recognized the need for more uniform and complete pathology reports to further aid in the delivery of high quality care to cancer patients.  To work toward this goal, the CAP Cancer Committee wrote and published the first set of the "Cancer Protocols" in 1986.  Since that time significant changes and additions to the protocols have been implemented.  This Webinar will present the history and development of the "Cancer Protocols", explain their function, and emphasize the importance of complete pathology reports in the care of cancer patients.  It will also discuss the endorsement of the protocols by the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer as well as review the Commission on Cancer's standard for accreditation scheduled for implementation in 2012.   

    Visit the CoC Online Education Portal and register today to view these webinars.

    Preparing for Your CoC Survey

    Cost: FREE

    This webinar is designed to assist cancer programs with preparation for their accreditation survey. No matter when your next survey will take place, it is never too early to start the process to prepare. This 45 minute pre-recorded webinar gives you and your cancer program leadership a high-level overview of the process; from electronic notifications to post survey steps, and all steps in between. Go to and click on "Preparing for Your CoC Survey" to access this webinar. 

    New On-Demand Webinars to Support the New CoC Standards Coming Soon

    Cancer Programs Standards 2012:

    • Quality of Patient Care: New CoC Standards
    • Clinical Trial Screening and Accrual
    • Studies of Quality and Quality Improvements
    • Roles and Responsibilities of the Cancer Committee
    • The Cancer Committee’s Role in Evaluation and Reporting
    • Important Accreditation Facts: New Program Categories, Accreditation Awards, and the OAA
    • 2012 and Beyond: The Survey Process
    Continuum of Care Services:
    • Focus on Survivorship Care Plans
    • Introduction to Patient Navigation Part 1
    • Introduction to Patient Navigation Part 2
    • Psychosocial Distress Screening, Tools, and Resources
    • A Palliative Care Primer
    • Cancer Risk Assessment and Genetics Testing 

    These titles will be added to the On-Demand registration page soon.

    AJCC Update: Letter from the Chair of the AJCC


    The AJCC is in full transformation at all levels. The first critical step forward was taken in April with a two-day retreat led by a talented facilitator. The Executive Committee members and the AJCC staff engaged in intensive, forthright, and highly productive discussions of the challenges and opportunities facing the AJCC as it prepares for a future in which molecular medicine will become the dominant theme in cancer care. The issues addressed included: how current trends (that is, increasing use of biomarkers and other nonanatomic factors) will impact how the AJCC fulfills its mission to maintain a worldwide cancer staging system; whether the current model of publication of a new edition of the staging system every six to eight years is a sustainable or appropriate model; what future AJCC products might be needed and what they will look like; and most importantly, how and in what timeframe the AJCC should undertake the needed changes to accommodate the new roles and products it envisions for a world of molecularly informed cancer medicine. Based on these discussions, several key decisions were made about the key goals and guiding principles for AJCC's transformation:

    • The primary focus of the AJCC will remain the review and analysis of anatomic staging data and the development of future editions of the staging systems based on that scientific evidence.

    • A standardized and efficient process for the development of future editions of AJCC staging systems will be developed and implemented to achieve uniformity of approach across all disease sites.

    • Criteria or “rules” for acceptance and integration of externally validated nonanatomic prognostic factors with anatomic staging will be developed and applied to future staging proposals.

    In keeping with our secondary goals of transparency and education, we will fully inform the AJCC community about changes implemented and progress achieved through transformation. We seek greater involvement and commitment from our constituency, members, and partners to ensure AJCC leadership in cancer medicine.

    As the AJCC considers future changes to its processes and products, it is critically important that the organization continue serving all of its customers optimally. The two largest user groups for staging data are the cancer care delivery community and the cancer surveillance community. The needs of these two groups are not always fully complementary, and the AJCC, in implementing change, must ensure that both groups’ requirements are met. A key element of the 7th Edition is to assure that the data elements entered into hospital-based cancer registries are compatible with the requirements of the broad cancer surveillance using the Collaborative Stage (CS) Data Collection System. The CS system uses specific codes to define tumor size and extension, lymph node status, presence of metastases, and relevant nonanatomic factors, such as tumor markers and grade. Development and oversight of the CS system have been achieved through a partnership between the AJCC and the major cancer registration and surveillance organizations. The CS system provides a unified data collection system that is designed to meet the needs of all major cancer surveillance organizations, which historically captured cancer staging information using three different systems (Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results [SEER] Extent of Disease, Summary Stage, and AJCC TNM) with different purposes, data sets, and rules. Conceptually, this system represents a labor-saving device that eliminates reduplication of effort for the cancer registry community. However, development and implementation version 2 of the CS system for the 7th Edition has proven more labor-intensive and cumbersome than expected, raising concerns about its sustainability.

    In order to address the issues surrounding the CS system and to more fully understand the perspectives and challenges of the surveillance community in the search for proactive solutions, the AJCC convened a Cancer Surveillance Summit Conference. The meeting brought together the clinical cancer care delivery and surveillance communities. Discussions focused on the ways each community uses the staging data and how the evolution of staging and prognostic data would affect those uses. The deliberations and discussions from the two-day summit will inform the process for rolling revision, version release, and implementation revisions of the cancer staging manual, while respecting retrospective compatibility of the data. In order to meet the goals and requirements of both communities, the following five areas of priority were identified:

      • Development of criteria for inclusion of data elements into Collaborative Stage
      • Evaluation and simplification of the data system
      • Stabilization of anatomic stage to the greatest degree possible
      • Development of a revised governance model for Collaborative Stage
      • Development of a process to communicate and implement data items

      Finally, the AJCC presented a proposal  to the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC: formerly known as the International Union Against Cancer) annual meeting in April of their TNM Staging Committee in Geneva, Switzerland. The proposal was that the AJCC become a full partner in future development and publication of updated staging systems as well as enhancement of stage-related prognosis through integration with nonanatomic prognostic factors. Although the AJCC and the UICC have complemented their separate efforts in both these domains for many years, a true partnership would allow them to speak with one voice to the worldwide cancer community. Such a joint venture would formally combine intellectual talent and cancer data sets from around the world. The UICC met this proposal with enthusiasm, and a summit conference between the leadership of the two organizations is being planned.

      Many other exciting activities are also underway that include a redesign of the AJCC website, the development of staging “apps” for cell phones, the development of new educational programs, the completion of the development process for the 2nd Edition of the AJCC Staging Atlas (expected publication date January 2012) and planning for the AJCC 2011 annual meeting in Chicago, September 22–24.

      It is indeed an exciting time for the AJCC as we expand our mission and redesign our processes to meet future challenges. We have been energized by the prospects for success by the talent, enthusiasm, and selfless dedication of members, contributors, collaborators, and staff alike. The agenda is ambitious, but the motivation to continually improve our service to cancer patients is powerful. Working together, we are more than equal to the task.

      Carolyn Compton, MD, PhD
      Chair, American Joint Committee on Cancer

      AJCC Website Survey

      The American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) is beginning the redesign of  its website, working to improve the aesthetics along with the navigation, content, and functionality of the website.

       The AJCC seeks input from registrars, physicians, and any other individuals who will use the AJCC website. The AJCC wants to ensure that the redesigned website reflects the usage needs of those who use it most often.

      A survey to gather feedback and suggestions regarding the redesign is available at If you are not familiar with the AJCC website, please spend some time looking through it prior to completing the survey.

      Go to and take a few moments to contribute your opinions to the redesign process. Your input will help us create a website that will better serve the needs of our users. 

      Questions? E-mail

      A Fond Farewell to Dr. Irvin Fleming

      The AJCC is saddened to announce the passing of Irvin Durant Fleming, MD, FACS, on August 8, 2011. Dr. Fleming was a prominent physician, surgical oncologist, and avid volunteer for the Commission on Cancer and the American Joint Committee on Cancer. He also volunteered for more than 50 years for the American Cancer Society. His medical career was a commitment to the war on cancer, and he was long involved with the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons. In 1997, he was elected chairman of the AJCC. He introduced major changes in cancer staging by establishing a landmark collaboration between the AJCC and the National Cancer Institute SEER Program, the National Program for Cancer Registries at the Centers for Disease Control, the Commission on Cancer, the National Cancer Registrars Association, and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries known as Collaborative Staging. He was the editor of the Fifth Edition of the AJCC Cancer Staging Manual, and the Seventh Edition was dedicated to him. His influence on cancer care and his commitment extended well beyond the AJCC, as evidenced by his leadership in many organizations. The AJCC is privileged to have worked with such a visionary. He will be missed!

      Donations in Dr. Fleming’s memory may be made to the American Cancer Society Harrah’s Hope Lodge.

      CS FAQ Document with Known Issue for v02.03

      The Collaborative Stage (CS) Team is preparing for the next release of CS in Fall 2011. In the meantime, the CS team has developed a known issue document that can be useful when coding in CSv02.03. This FAQ document can be found at This document contains important information for a few schemas and fields where there is a known issue with CSv02.03 that will be resolved in the upcoming release. This document was created to let you know that we are aware of the issues you may be encountering with these few fields in CSv02.03 and they will be resolved in CSv02.04. Please take a moment to download or print this document as a reference to use when coding these fields.

      Collaborative Stage Reliability Study - Mark your Calendars!

      Make your plans now to participate in the Collaborative Stage Reliability Study.

      Why should I take part in this study?

      1.    NCRA will award 10 CE credits for each group of cases completed. Complete both groups and earn a total of 20 CEs.

      2.    For Commission on Cancer-accredited facilities, participation will be recognized as attendance at a 2011 national meeting. In addition to meeting compliance for registrar education (Standard 7.2), participation may also help your program achieve commendation for standard 7.2.

      3.    Most importantly, the results of a study will be used to evaluate educational training programs and/or manuals. Discrepancies are reviewed and if CS coding instructions are found to be ambiguous or vague, those instructions will be clarified. Discrepancies are also used to identify educational needs so future programs can be targeted to the needs of the registrar.

      When and where will the study take place?

      This study will be conducted on the SEER Reliability website, The reliability study will open for participant registration and to access practice cases at 8 AM Eastern Time on Monday, August 29, 2011.

      The actual study period is September 12–30, 2011. See the summary timeline below:

      Registration opens: August 29, 2011—8 am (Eastern)

      Study opens: September 12, 2011—8 am (Eastern)

      Study closes: September 30, 2011—11:59 pm (Eastern)

      If you do not already have an account on the SEER Reliability website, you can follow the instructions for creating a new account at You may request a new account any time prior to and during the study. If you already have an account, you can access that account when the study opens.

      Which version of CS will be used for the study?

      CS version 02.03 will be used for the reliability study. The purpose of this study is to test the usability of CS, not a specific version. The cases and questions have been structured accordingly. Although v02.04 will be released in Fall 2011, the CS Field Study and Mapping Teams determined that the upcoming changes are minor and limited and not significant enough to warrant delaying the study.

      Traditionally, reliability studies have provided excellent feedback on understanding of the information being collected and pointing out areas that need further clarification or topics for education and training. All information collected from this study will be provided to the CSv2 teams for further review and discussion. Help us improve CS by participating!

      Questions? Email

      Pursuing Excellence through Accreditation Workshop – November 18, 2011

      Mark your calendar! The National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers (NAPBC) has organized a full-day workshop, Pursuing Excellence through Accreditation, to be held at the American College of Surgeons headquarters in Chicago on Friday, November 18, 2011. This daylong workshop will provide information related to the NAPBC components and standards, survey process, and the new quality measures and related requirements scheduled for implementation in January 2012. Attendance at this workshop will assist centers applying for accreditation, as well as centers due for reaccreditation in 2012 and beyond.

      NAPBC board members, surveyors, and staff will convey information at the workshop. Most importantly, there will be a detailed presentation specific to the NAPBC components and standards and a discussion of the requirements for complying with each standard. The workshop will also cover changes to the standards so that there is a clear understanding of what is expected and how it will be measured. Another detailed presentation titled What to Expect on the Day of Survey will walk you through a site visit from a surveyor’s perspective. Learn about what the surveyor is looking for during the survey.

      Pursuing Excellence through Accreditation is designed for individuals involved in the delivery of multidisciplinary breast health care, including physicians, nurses, administrators, cancer registry professionals, and others involved in the day-to-day operations of the breast center.

      Follow the link below to read more about the workshop, download a workshop brochure, and/or register to attend:

      These workshops are always well-attended, and seating is limited. Enrollment will be on a first come, first-served basis. Register TODAY.

      NAPBC Components and Standards Webinar Offered On-Demand

      The NAPBC webinar—NAPBC Components and Standards—is now available as an on-demand recording. This 60-minute webinar provides a comprehensive overview of the 17 components of care and the 27 standards that are required for NAPBC accreditation. The presentation includes a discussion of each standard - its definition and requirements, the documentation required to comply with it, and its rating system.

      You will find this on-demand webinar at: You may purchase it for $50.

      For registration support, call 1-800-274-9390 or e-mail

      NAPBC Exhibit Schedule – Fall 2011

      The NAPBC will host an exhibit at the following meetings:

      American Society of Clinical Oncology, Breast Cancer Symposium 2011
      September 8–10, 2011
      Marriott Marquis
      San Francisco, CA

      American College of Surgeons Clinical Congress
      October 23–27, 2011
      Moscone Center
      San Francisco, CA

      San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium
      December 6–10, 2011
      Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center
      San Antonio, TX

      If you will be attending these meetings and have questions or wish to pick up an NAPBC Information Kit, stop by any one of these exhibits.

      To learn more about the NAPBC, visit, e-mail, or call 312-202-5185.

      SGO Releases Report on Women’s Cancer Research Priorities for Next Decade

      In conjunction with Gynecologic Cancer Awareness month in September, the Society of Gynecologic Oncology (SGO) will release a comprehensive research report titled, “Pathways to Progress in Women’s Cancer: A Research Agenda Proposed by the Society of Gynecologic Oncology.” This collaborative document, written by a variety of women’s cancer care team specialists, including gynecologic oncologists, medical and radiation oncologists, basic science researchers, epidemiologists, and educators, provides an assessment of the gynecologic cancer research landscape, recommending 10-year strategic goals. The report will serve as a useful tool for women’s cancer organizations and advocacy groups as they establish future research and funding priorities, with the goal of advancing the federal government’s women’s cancer research agenda.

      Specifically, the report impresses upon the need for bench and translational research, clinical trials, training, and survivorship for the key cancers of the gynecologic tract, including ovarian, endometrial, and cervical cancers. Each chapter is divided into sections that offer an introduction/background of the disease, recent research advances, an outline of specific research goals, and progressive steps to achieve these goals.
      The report updates an original 1997 report that was a product of a two-day strategic planning meeting of the SGO, the National Cancer Institute, and the Office of Women’s Health at the Department of Health and Human Services on ovarian cancer. From these discussions, a plan set in motion many of the current research initiatives, including the Department of Defense ovarian cancer research program. The goal is to focus on all gynecologic cancers and assist in procuring funding for future advocacy efforts and initiatives.

      For more information on the “Pathways to Progress” report, contact SGO’s Communications Department at 312-235-4060 or visit SGO’s website at

      Pfizer Launches Cancer: It’s Personal

      Pfizer Oncology has recently introduced Cancer: It’s Personal, a program designed to educate people with cancer, their caregivers and healthcare professionals about the role personalized medicine may play in oncology. They have provided the cancer community with resources to have more informed conversations about personalized medicine and biomarker testing. Please visit the websites below for more information:

      (The CoC is not affiliated with Pfizer Oncology or these websites. This information is provided to the CoC constituency as a courtesy only.)

      NCRA News

      NCRA 2012: Call for Presentation Abstracts

      Share your expertise with your colleagues at NCRA’s 38th Annual Educational Conference, April 18-21, 2012, at the Gaylord National Hotel and Convention Center in Washington, DC. Submit a presentation abstract using NCRA's online system. Abstracts will be reviewed by the National Cancer Registrars Association 2012 Program Committee. The deadline for submitting abstracts is October 21, 2011. All submissions will be acknowledged, and those selected will be notified by November 18, 2011. For more information on the categories, judging criteria, and how to submit, go to:

      Monthly Spotlight: American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists

      The Commission on Cancer regularly collaborates with nearly 50 member organizations in its mission to provide quality cancer care. This month we spotlight five organizations: the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), the American Urological Association (AUA), the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the American Pediatric Surgery Association (APSA), and LIVESTRONG.

      ACOG and its 56,000 obstetrician-gynecologists and other partners in women’s health care are dedicated to the prevention and treatment of cervical cancer and other conditions affecting women’s health through continuing medical education, practice, and research.

      Event Information:

      Registration is open now for these postgraduate courses offering up to 16 credits:

      “Practical Obstetrics and Gynecology,” December 2-4, 2011, at the Fairmont Hotel in Chicago, IL, will feature sessions on cancer screening and management of abnormal cervical cytology. Program director: Laurie McKenzie, MD. More information and registration information is available at:   

       “Update on Cervical Diseases,” December 1-3, 2011, at the New York Marriott Marquis in New York City is designed to update clinicians on the dramatic changes that have occurred over the past five to 10 years in the understanding of causes, screening methods, prevention, identification, and management of cervical pre-cancer. Program director: Mark Spitzer, MD. More information and registration information is available at:


      In 2011, ACOG issued the following guidelines on cancer:
      •    Practice Bulletin #122 “Breast Cancer Screening”
      •    Committee Opinion #505, “Understanding and Using the U.S. Medical Eligibility Criteria for Contraceptive Use, 2010”
      •    Committee Opinion #483 “Primary and Preventive Care: Periodic Assessments”
      •    Committee Opinion #482 “Colonoscopy and Colorectal Cancer Screening Strategies”
      •    Committee Opinion #477 “The Role of the Obstetrician-Gynecologist in the Early Detection of Epithelial Ovarian Cancer”
      The ACOG has issued the following patient pamphlets on cancer (available in English and Spanish):
      •    Cancer of the Ovary (AP096)
      •    Cancer of the Cervix (AP163)
      •    Human Papillomavirus Infection (AP073)
      •    Understanding Abnormal Pap Tests (AP161)
      •    The Pap Test (AP085)
      •    Human Papillomavirus Vaccine (AP167)
      •    Breast Self-Exam (AP145)
      •    Cancer of the Uterus (AP097)
      •    Detecting and Treating Breast Problems (AP026)
      •    Reducing Your Risk of Cancer (AP007)

      For more information on this organization, please contact:
      Resource Center, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, PO Box 96920, Washington, DC 20090-6920
      Phone: 202-638-5577
      Website: | E-mail:

      American Urological Association

      The AUA promotes the highest standards of urological clinical care through education, research, and in the formulation of health care policy.

      AUA’s primary purpose is to organize urologists with the goal of advancing the legitimate professional interests of its members, as well as the medical needs of the public. The subsidiary purposes, pursued in conjunction with AUA Education and Research, Inc. (AUA/ER), and other affiliated entities, include the following:
      •    to encourage research, experimentation, investigation, and analysis of diseases, abnormalities, and other conditions of the genitourinary tract, their treatments, and corrections
      •    to make the results known to physicians and the public
      •    to develop, and assist in developing, scientific methods for the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of such diseases
      •    to benefit the general public by encouraging the study and maintaining the highest possible standards of urological education, practice, and research
      •    to promote the publication of, and encourage contributions to, medical and scientific literature pertaining to the specialty of urology
      AUA/ER strives to improve practice and patient care by providing affordable quality urologic education.  AUA/ER is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians. In 2008, the AUA received the ACCME’s highest level of achievement: accreditation with commendation.

      The AUA Foundation is the nation's leading urologic health charity dedicated to improving the prevention, detection, treatment, and ultimately, a cure for urologic diseases.

      The AUA, along with its affiliated organizations, has spearheaded a number of initiatives to reduce the public health burden of common urologic malignancies in the U.S.  The AUA has worked with congressional representatives to develop legislation to facilitate and support prostate cancer research in the U.S.  Through the AUA Foundation, it has partnered with the National Football League to develop the “Know Your Stats” Campaign to increase prostate cancer awareness among men at risk for the disease. These efforts, and others, underscore the AUA’s commitment to improving survival and quality of life for cancer survivors.

      Event Information:
      AUA’s next annual convention will take place May 19-24, 2012, in Atlanta, GA.

      Recent Publications and/or Products:

      The Journal of Urology®: Official journal of the AUA, published monthly.

      Health Policy Brief: Monthly AUA publication with news on the latest activities on Capitol Hill, coding updates and practice management issues.

      UrologyHealth Extra: The AUA Foundation’s quarterly newsletter written by experts and designed to keep patients up to date on the latest breakthroughs in a variety of urologic health issues.

      : An e-newsletter from the AUA featuring important annual meeting information and course details, CME opportunities, new product information, new services, and more.

      Urology Core Curriculum.  This comprehensive online resource details the knowledge necessary to deliver quality urological care. Divided into more than 50 specialized sections, this Core Curriculum covers the depth and breadth of urology.

      For more information on this organization, please contact:

      American Urological Association, 1000 Corporate Boulevard, Linthicum, MD, 21090

      Executive Administration:

      Health Policy Division:

      Phone: 410-689-3700 | Website:


      The American Academy of Pediatrics

      The AAP is an organization of 60,000 primary care pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists, and pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health, safety and well- being of infants, children, adolescents, and young adults.  The AAP Section on Hematology/Oncology (SOHO) was formed in 1975 and consists of more than 300 pediatricians board certified in hematology/oncology.  The Section strives to improve the care of infants, children, and adolescents with cancer and hematologic disorders by providing an educational forum for neoplastic and hematologic disease.  The Section aims to stimulate research in, and the teaching of, pediatric hematology-oncology and disseminate the knowledge of it through AAP channels to the medical profession at large, the public, and government agencies.  For more information on the Section, go to

      The AAP and the Section have participated on the Alliance for Childhood Cancer (ACC) ( since its inception more than 10 years ago.  The ACC represents more than 20 national patient advocacy groups and professional medical and scientific organizations.  It works to increase awareness of childhood cancer, advance research and policies to prevent cancer, and improve diagnosis, treatment, supportive care, and survivorship of children and adolescents with cancer. Edwin Forman, MD, serves as the AAP/SOHO representative on the ACC and is one of its founding members and former first chair.  The AAP Department of Federal Affairs attends these meetings and has played an integral role in the ACC’s activities.  The AAP has worked with the ACC to encourage support of clinical trials legislation, appropriations for the Caroline Pryce Walker Conquer Childhood Cancer Act, and ongoing reforms that address the needs of children with and surviving childhood cancer.

      Recent Publications:
      The Section is instrumental in policy development of  relevant to its area of expertise.  SOHO has worked with other key AAP Sections/Committee/Councils to develop the following three cancer-related policies:

      Find additional AAP policy, publications, and resources at the following links: (public policy), (publications) and (AAP professional resources)

      For more information on this organization, please contact:
      Suzanne Kirkwood, Manger, Section on Hematology/Oncology, 141 Northwest Point Blvd., Elk Grove Village, IL  60007
      Phone: 1-800-433-9016
      Website: | E-mail:

      The American Pediatric Surgery Association

      The APSA is an organization dedicated to ensuring optimal pediatric surgical care of patients and their families, and to promoting excellence in the field of pediatric surgery.  This organization advocates for high standards in the surgical care of infants and children and strives to make these surgical services available to as many children as possible.  APSA functions to create a community and identity among pediatric surgeons, and it also provides high-quality continuing education for its members.  APSA has a rich history in supporting discovery, innovation, and improvement of care for children with surgical diseases. 

      Robert Shamberger, MD, FACS, is the current president of the organization and Ms. Lee Ann Clark is the executive director. 

      Event Information:
      The APSA annual meeting will be held May 20-23, 2012, at the JW Marriott Hill Country Resort and Spa in San Antonio, TX.  This meeting will be very exciting for pediatric surgical oncology, as it will immediately follow the International Pediatric Surgical Oncology (IPSO) meeting, May 19-20, at the same venue.  In addition to the two days dedicated to pediatric surgical oncology, the cancer committee will provide an update on developments in pediatric surgical oncology from the Children’s Oncology Group.  There will also be invited presentations discussing data in the areas of basic and clinical science aspects of pediatric surgical oncology.

      Recent Publications and/or Products:
      1.     Loworn HN, Ayers, D, Zhao Z, et al.  Defining hepatoblastoma responsiveness to induction therapy as measured by tumor volume and serum α-fetoprotein kinetics.  J Pediatr Surg. 2010;45:121-129.
      2.      Oltmann SC, Garcia N, Barber R, et al. Can we preoperatively risk stratify ovarian masses for malignancy?   J Pediatr Surg. 2010;45:130-134.
      3.     Oltmann SC, Fischer A,  Barber R, et al.  Pediatric ovarian malignancy presenting as ovarian torsion incidence and relevance.  J Pediatr Surg. 2010;45:135-139.
      4.     Barrie S. Rich, Maureen P. McEvoy, Michael P. LaQuaglia, Suzanne L. Wolden.  Local control, survival, and operative morbidity and mortality after re-resection, and intraoperative radiation therapy for recurrent or persistent primary high-risk neuroblastoma.  J Pediatr Surg. 2011;46:97-102.
      5.      Barrie S. Rich, Maureen P. McEvoy, Natasha E. Kelly, Edwin Oh, Sara J. Abramson, Anita P. Price, Nai-Kong V. Cheung, Michael P. La Quaglia.  Resectability and operative morbidity after chemotherapy in neuroblastoma patients with encasement of major visceral arteries.  J Pediatr Surg. 2011;46:103-107.
      6.     Amir S. Gendy, Aaron Lipskar, Richard D. Glick, Bettie M. Steinberg, Morris Edelman, Samuel Z. Soffer.  Selective inhibition of cyclooxygenase-2 suppresses metastatic disease without affecting primary tumor growth in a murine model of Ewing sarcoma.  J Pediatr Surg. 2011; 46:108-114.
      7.  Yogangi Malhotra, Tamara N. Fitzgerald, Paul T. Jubinsky, Holly Harper, Cicero T. Silva, Eduardo Zambrano, Karen A. Diefenbach, R. Lawrence Moss, Vineet Bhandari. A unique case of rhabdoid tumor presenting as hemoperitoneum in an infant.  J Pediatr Surg. 2011; 46:247-251.
      8.  APSA Cancer Committee update on COG protocols (website).

      For more information on this organization, please contact:
      Lee Ann Clark, Executive Director, APSA Headquarters, 111 Deer Lake Road, Suite 100, Deerfield, IL, 60015
      Phone: 847-480-9576 | Fax: 847-480-9282
      Website: | E-mail:


      LIVESTRONG fights for the 28 million people around the world living with cancer today LIVESTRONG feels there can be - and should be - life after cancer for more people. That’s why they kick in at the moment of diagnosis, giving people the resources and support they need to fight cancer head-on. They find innovative ways to raise awareness, fund research and end the stigma about cancer that many survivors face. LIVESTRONG connects people and communities to drive social change, and call for state, national and world leaders to help fight this disease. The organization seeks to promote the optimal physical, psychological and social recovery and care of cancer survivors and their loved ones by focusing its activities on survivorship education and resources, community programs, national advocacy initiatives, and scientific and clinical research grants.

      This article focuses on the dissemination of knowledge acquired by the LIVESTRONG Survivorship Center of Excellence Network. At LIVESTRONG this program is under the leadership of Andy Miller, MHSE, CHES, Executive Vice President, Mission, Ruth Rechis, PhD, Director, Research & Evaluation and Sarah R Arvey, PhD, Senior Manager, Research & Evaluation. The Network is comprised of eight National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated cancer centers:

      •    Abramson Cancer Center, University of Pennsylvania
      •    Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
      •    Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
      •    Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center at UCLA
      •    Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
      •    The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute
      •    University of Colorado Cancer Center
      •    University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center

      Event Information:
      The LIVESTRONG Survivorship Center of Excellence Network (Network) was established in 2005 to advance survivorship care and improve the health and quality of life of post-treatment cancer survivors. Over the course of the last five years, Network members have expanded knowledge of the field of survivorship, pioneered new interventions for cancer survivors and developed, evaluated and disseminated survivorship best practices to national and international audiences, including best strategies for—and challenges to—instituting a survivorship care program.

      On October 20– 21, the Network will offer the LIVESTRONG Survivorship Leadership Training Institute (Training Institute), a one and a half day course at the Omni Parker House Hotel in historic downtown Boston. At the Training Institute, providers and administrators of cancer centers can learn from Network Directors and other leaders in the field how to develop holistic and sustainable survivorship programs to better serve cancer survivors in their own community or clinical settings. Attendees will learn how to develop a sustainable survivorship program from the ground up, account for the dollars and cents of survivorship program, and address cancer survivors’ needs holistically.

      LIVESTRONG Training Institute Faculty include Network Directors from seven different NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers across the nation, Community Health Leaders, and a Commission on Cancer (CoC) representative who will discuss how to implement the new CoC guidelines on survivorship care in different settings.

      By the end of the Training Institute, course attendees will be able to:

      • Understand the new Commission on Cancer guidelines in survivorship.
      • Describe the key medical and psychosocial issues facing cancer survivors.
      • Describe steps needed to create an outstanding cancer survivorship program in different health care settings.
      • Define the key components of care typically provided in cancer survivorship programs.
      • Describe the roles of nutrition, exercise, and psychosocial counseling in survivorship care.
      • Explain the practical issues to consider in developing a survivorship program such as business planning, metrics and evaluation, or sustaining a program over time.

      Registration Fee - $325 per individual

      The Training Institute is offered separately or in conjunction with the course entitled “Cancer Survivorship for Clinicians: Helping Survivors Live Well Beyond Cancer.” This second course, October 21-23 at the Omni Parker House Hotel in Boston, is offered by the Dana-Farber Institute’s Adult Survivorship Program at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the Harvard Medical School. Major topics to be covered include: specific medical issues in cancer survivorship, survivorship research programs, body image, living with cancer, and health disparities.

      Registration Fee BEFORE AUGUST 31

      Physicians: $400

      Allied health professionals: $275

      Registration Fee AFTER AUGUST 31

      Physicians: $450

      Allied health professionals: $325

      To learn more about the Training Institute, please contact Dr. Sarah Arvey at To register for the Training Institute and/or the DFCI course “Cancer Survivorship for Clinicians” follow the link.

      Recent Publications and/or Products:
      Campbell MK, Tessaro I, Mindy Gellin, Carmina G. Valle, Shannon
      Golden, Leanne Kaye, Patricia A. Ganz, Mary S. McCabe, Linda A. Jacobs, Karen Syrjala, Barbara Anderson, Alison F. Jones, Kenneth Miller. Adult Cancer Survivorship Care: Experiences from the LIVESTRONG Centers of Excellence Network. J Cancer Survivorship, 2011: May 10. [Epub ahead of print].

      Rechis, R & Eargle, E. Defining survivorship care: Lessons learned from the LIVESTRONG Survivorship Center of Excellence Network. A LIVESTRONG Report, 2011.

      For more information on this organization, please contact:
      Sarah R. Arvey, PhD
      Phone: 512-279-8440
      Web Address: | Email: