Presidential Matters Archive January 2013

January 2013

Dear SGO members,

We face a crisis. Women with gynecologic cancer are often treated by providers lacking sufficient training and experience. Care for these women is often fragmented, uncoordinated, and not based upon established guidelines. As a result of this broken system, the cost of providing care to women with gynecologic cancer remains high and these women often suffer poorer outcomes. With limited accountability in our system, the goal of providing consistent, high quality, cost-effective care remains elusive. We cannot stand idly by.

In June 2012, SGO took the matter into our own hands. We convened a Practice Summit comprised of thought leaders to assess the health care system and policy environment. Over the following months, we examined the issues raised at the Summit. We now propose our solutions.

The SGO White Paper, “Creating a New Paradigm in Gynecologic Cancer Care: Policy Proposals for Delivery, Quality and Reimbursement,” provides the road map towards improving the coordination and quality of gynecologic cancer care, while reducing costs associated with unnecessary testing and inappropriate therapies. In the coming months, we will disseminate this report to policymakers to drive constructive change in our health care system.

Our goal is to achieve meaningful reforms that will improve health care for women with gynecologic cancer and rescue an economically unsustainable medical system. This report is just the first step. Please read it carefully. Your feedback and suggestions will help define the next of many steps on this road to reform. Share your thoughts by commenting below or emailing me at

You will also have an opportunity to learn more and provide feedback at the SGO Annual Meeting on Women’s Cancer during the Annual Business Meeting and Member Forum at 9 a.m. Monday, March 11. I look forward to seeing you in Los Angeles!

Ronald D. Alvarez, MD