YOKOHAMA, Japan, Oct. 15, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The first press briefing at the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) 18th World Conference on Lung Cancer (WCLC) highlighted new awards and innovations that encourage and support the treatment of lung cancer and other thoracic malignancies; these include the recognition of outstanding care teams, introduction of new guidelines for nurses and fostering the next generation of researchers.
The press conference began with a welcome message from Conference Co-Presidents Dr. Hisao Asamura and Dr. Keunchil Park, who have worked tirelessly to make this year’s conference in Yokohama a major success.
The first Cancer Care Team Award recognizes exceptional patient care
The IASLC Foundation is awarding its first-ever Cancer Care Team Award to multidisciplinary cancer care teams across the globe who go above and beyond to provide the highest-quality patient care. The award was proposed by Dr. Matthew Holman and his wife, Marilyn, a lung cancer survivor. Jill Feldman, a lung cancer survivor and advocate from the United States, introduced the award by telling her story and sharing why this award is particularly meaningful to her.
“My team at Rush University has always been patient-centered and is so deserving of this award, along with the other awardees today,” said Jill Feldman. “Amazing things are possible when teams across disciplines work together to put the patient first. I am grateful to the IASLC Foundation for introducing an award that encourages this kind of extraordinary teamwork.”
Teams at the following institutions were recognized with the award:
- Guangdong Lung Cancer Institute (China)
- Neotorax – Oncologia D´or (Brazil)
- Instytut Gruźlicy i Chorób Płuc w Warszawie (Poland); Klinika Chorób Wewnętrznych, Pneumonologii i Alergologii, Samodzielny Publiczny szpital Kliniczny w Warszawie (Poland); Centrum Onkologii – Instytut im. Marii Skłodowskiej-Curie w Warszawie (Poland)
- Johns Hopkins Hospital – Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center (USA)
- Rush University Medical Center (USA)
New guidelines for nurses provide best practices for immunotherapy treatment
At last year’s WCLC in Vienna, the IASLC Nursing and Allied Health Committee identified the need for educational support for those caring for lung cancer patients receiving immunotherapy. During today’s press conference, Kim Rohan of the United States and Anne Fraser of New Zealand unveiled the resulting guidelines for immunotherapy. The guidelines are an invaluable resource to nurses and cover the life-threatening adverse effects patients may experience during immunotherapy treatment including gastrointestinal, dermatologic, endocrine, ocular, hepatic, neurological and pulmonary toxicities.
“These guidelines are unique in that they are the result of international collaboration,” said Anne Fraser. “As immunotherapy treatment continues to be utilized more frequently, the guidelines will be essential to helping nurses understand and mitigate the potential side effects.”
IASLC Mentorship Award participants speak to the value of mentorship
The IASLC International Mentorship Program is a professional development and education program for early-career thoracic malignancy-focused physicians and researchers from economically developing countries. Thirteen mentees were selected for the 2017 program, representing specialties from medical oncology to pulmonology and hailing from Argentina, China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Serbia and Thailand. Some of the world’s leading figures in lung cancer will provide mentorship and guidance during the WCLC, as well as host the mentees at their home institutions for a week.
A number of mentors shared their experiences with the program and underscored the value of mentorship, including Fiona Blackhall of the United Kingdom, Ross Camidge of the United States, Nir Peled of Israel and Mary O’Brien of the United Kingdom.
For Prof. Blackhall, the benefits of mentorship include the ability to inspire the next generation of oncologists and cancer researchers, serve as a female role model in medicine and highlight areas of unmet need in lung cancer research. Prof. Peled found that there were mutual benefits of working with his mentee, as he has been able to enlarge his team network. Dr. Camidge, who is based in Denver, discussed his long-distance collaboration with his mentee, Harry Ren of China. They jointly diagnosed a patient who then traveled to Denver for a clinical trial, demonstrating the value of global collaboration.
Mary O’Brien also spoke to why mentorship is so critical for young professionals in the field. “Medicine is a profession traditionally taught as an apprenticeship, learning from and watching senior doctors. Medicine has changed and much is not taught through books and other sources of information. We need to remember the power of human contact. A strong mentorship scheme will bring the best out of young doctors, talents that are both obvious and hidden,” said Dr. O’Brien.
Livestreams of the daily press conferences are available here.
About the WCLC
The World Conference on Lung Cancer (WCLC) is the world’s largest meeting dedicated to lung cancer and other thoracic malignancies, attracting over 6,000 researchers, physicians and specialists from more than 100 countries. The goal is to disseminate the latest scientific achievements; increase awareness, collaboration and understanding of lung cancer; and to help participants implement the latest developments across the globe. Organized under the theme of “Synergy to Conquer Lung Cancer,” the conference will cover a wide range of disciplines and unveil several research studies and clinical trial results. For more information, visit wclc2017.iaslc.org.
About the IASLC
The International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) is the only global organization dedicated to the study of lung cancer and other thoracic malignancies. Founded in 1974, the association’s membership includes more than 6,500 lung cancer specialists across all disciplines in over 100 countries, forming a global network working together to conquer lung and thoracic cancers worldwide. The association also publishes the Journal of Thoracic Oncology, the primary educational and informational publication for topics relevant to the prevention, detection, diagnosis and treatment of all thoracic malignancies. Visit www.iaslc.org for more information.
Becky Bunn, MSc
Public Relations Manager