SGO Issues August 13, 2015
SGO convenes Genetics Summit to address genetic care delivery models
SGO Congressional Ambassadors reach out to elected officials
Gynecologic Oncology available as mobile app
SGO COR reaches 2,000 patient records
SGO in NY Times on IP chemo
Join #TeamVax Thunderclap to support vaccinations
SGO convened diverse stakeholders in cancer genetic testing on July 27-28 to discuss current genetic care delivery models across different practice settings. The SGO Genetics Summit also focused on physician education and training, access and barriers to genetics testing, and resources needed to help patients.
Participants included SGO members in academic or private practice, as well as representatives of the National Society of Genetics Counselors (NSGC), American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN), and advocacy groups Bright Pink and Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered (FORCE).
“This is a very rapidly evolving field,” said Steering Committee Member Karen H. Lu, MD, from the MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. “The contribution of Summit participants to a white paper is timely, given the emergence of PARP inhibitors for treatment of BRCA positive ovarian cancer patients, the complexity of panel testing.”
“In my opinion, the most satisfying aspect of the meeting involved the presence of multiple content experts, stakeholders, and advocates, all participating in open discussion regarding the planned agenda items focused on challenges associated with optimal delivery of clinical care to patients and family members at inherited genetic risk for gynecologic cancers,” said Steering Committee Chair Jeff Boyd, PhD, from the Miami Cancer Institute in Coral Gables, FL.
Dr. Lu said the primary product of the Genetics Summit will be a white paper summarizing the consensus recommendations on a genetic care delivery model, education and access. Other deliverables under consideration include an educational toolkit and policy reform initiatives.
Since the 2015 Annual Meeting, SGO’s Legislative and Regulatory Affairs taskforce has recruited 162 ambassadors across the US to reach out to elected officials regarding issues that impact gynecologic oncology. While Congress is in recess this month, the taskforce is encouraging SGO’s ambassadors to set up meetings with Members of Congress or their staffers to ensure that federal funding for cancer research and clinical trials are approved.
Noelle Gillette Cloven, MD, a volunteer SGO ambassador from Texas Oncology in Fort Worth, noted that physicians have made tremendous progress in the care of patients with gynecologic malignancies over the past 20 years, and much of this progress is directly related to government funding of research through the NRG Oncology, formerly the Gynecologic Oncology Group (GOG) and the Department of Defense (DoD) Ovarian Cancer Research Program.
“Recent cuts in government funding, including a potential additional cut to the DoD program jeopardize our ability to continue innovative research that will hopefully improve the quality of life and extend the lives of our patients. All of us have noticed that fewer trials are available as government support has diminished over recent years,” said Dr. Cloven.
“As a member of the SGO’s Ambassador Program, we are charged with informing our elected officials about our practices, patients and the importance of access to clinical trials,” Dr. Cloven added. “Our plan is to contact members of the House and Senate directly to arrange for local meetings to meet these ends. These grass roots efforts are essential for government officials to gain insight as to the important of our efforts.”
SGO ambassador Michael M. Frumovitz, MD, from the MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, added that contacting Members of Congress is not as daunting as it might seem.
“Reaching out to our elected officials is surprisingly easy,” said Dr. Frumovitz. “Senators, representatives, and/or their staff are eager to meet with their constituents to hear our issues, and these individual interactions go a long way in advancing our needs as gynecologic oncologists.”
SGO members who are interested in becoming an SGO Congressional Ambassador should contact Jill Rathbun, Director of Government Relations.
Subscribers to Gynecologic Oncology can now access the journal on their iOS (Apple) or Android device with a free mobile app. Subscribers can use the same email and password that they use for their desktop version of Gynecologic Oncology, and will be able to add notes, email and share articles via social media.
In addition to the latest issue of Gynecologic Oncology and the journal archive, additional features of the mobile app include text search functionality; mobile-friendly navigation and layouts; videos and interactive images/tables; and the ability to organize and manage content on a device and save favorites for convenience.
Log in to gynecologiconcology-online.net to create a username and password.
This summer the SGO Clinical Outcomes Registry (COR) reached 2,000 patient records—a 487 percent increase over the number of patient records one year ago. The SGO Registry taskforce considers this milestone to be a huge success, and the SGO COR is now working towards becoming a Qualified Clinical Data Registry (QCDR), allowing participants to use the COR for the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS). SGO will also be able to use the COR to meet the Maintenance of Certification (MOC) Part IV requirement.
“We are thrilled to see our number reach the 2,000 mark; this registry has accrued faster than our expectations,” said Summer Dewdney, MD, of Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, who is Chair of the SGO Registry taskforce and working with Vice-Chair Ed Grendys, MD.
“As we move forward we are seeking QCDR status in addition to working with the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ABOG) to obtain MOC credit for COR participation. It is a very exciting time for our registry,” said Dr. Dewdney, who added that the SGO COR is still accepting more sites.
As of July 31, the SGO COR had 31 Participation Agreements with a total of 2,035 patient records that includes data for operative care and postop complications within 30 days for endometrial, ovarian and cervical cancers along with follow-up care.
In a letter to the editor published in the Aug. 12 New York Times, SGO President Robert L. Coleman, MD, said that intraperitoneal (IP) chemotherapy is an effective means to extend the lives of women with advanced ovarian cancer, but may not be suitable for all patients.
On Aug. 17, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is calling on partners, individuals, public health workers, healthcare professionals, and parents to join the #TeamVax Thunderclap to support vaccines via social media. To show support, select Twitter, Facebook, or both; authorize Thunderclap to use these accounts, and Thunderclap will send a one-time message on August 17. Join the movement.