Source:

Mayer DK, et al. Survivorship research funding portfolios. Presented at: Cancer Center Survivorship Research Forum (virtual meeting); April 15-16, 2021.

Disclosures: Mayer and Tonorezos report no relevant disclosures.
April 16, 2021
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NCI, ACS to fund research into survivorship transition, pediatric cancer survivors

Source:

Mayer DK, et al. Survivorship research funding portfolios. Presented at: Cancer Center Survivorship Research Forum (virtual meeting); April 15-16, 2021.

Disclosures: Mayer and Tonorezos report no relevant disclosures.
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Improved outcomes for pediatric and adolescent/young adult cancer survivors, as well as successful transition to follow-up care, are among the research priorities being funded by the NCI and American Cancer Society.

Deborah K. Mayer, PhD, RN, OACN, FAAN, director of cancer survivorship at UNC Linebarger Comprehensive Cancer Center, discussed the need for survivorship studies to be more inclusive and representative of the diverse survivor population.

Deborah K. Mayer, PhD, RN, OACN, FAAN
Deborah K. Mayer

“There are very few long-term survivorship studies that go beyond 5 years, although we know that survivors are living much longer,” Mayer said during the meeting. “Additionally, about half of all survivorship studies are done in breast cancer. That’s great if you have breast cancer, but not so great if you have other types of cancer. We also know that most survivors are older than 65 years, and yet there are very few studies explicitly looking at older survivors.”

In an interview with Healio prior to the session, presenter Emily S. Tonorezos, MD, MPH, director of NCI’s Office of Cancer Survivorship, discussed two research funding opportunities in survivorship: RFA 19-033, “Improving Outcomes for Pediatric, Adolescent and Young Adult Cancer Survivors,” and RFA 19-035, “Optimizing the Management and Outcomes for Cancer Survivors Transitioning to Follow-up Care.”

Emily S. Tonorezos, MD, MPH
Emily S. Tonorezos

“There is a whole conundrum about how to successfully transition survivors, which was discussed in a previous session by Dr. Mayer,” Tonorezos said in the interview. “Oncology just doesn’t not have the capacity. When you think about the growing population of survivors and what their needs are, they really don’t belong in oncology, for the most part. But figuring out how to best bring in primary care is a real challenge.”

Tonorezos discussed some of the barriers to facilitating successful transition, including a lack of clarity regarding who is responsible for different components of care, lack of coordination and communication between survivors, a need for ongoing provider education about new treatments, and the lack of substantial impact of survivorship care plans on outcomes.

“The goal of this research is to stimulate the development, testing and/or scaling up of innovative, feasible and effective models for adult survivors of cancer who are transitioning from active treatment to follow-up care,” Tonorezos said.

RFA 19-033’s objective is to support the scientific development of treatments to address the psychosocial and physical effects in survivors of childhood/AYA cancers.

“This research will focus on people diagnosed with cancer between age 15 and 39 years,” Tonorezos said. “This population is unique for so many reasons: the types of cancer, the biology, the pathology, is different.”

The research will focus on the highly prioritized needs of this population and on identifying care gaps, Tonorezos said. It is intended to span topics such as telehealth, self-management portals, and disparities in health care delivery for pediatric/AYA survivors.