“The Cancer Support Community sees that immunotherapy is greatly impacting how we treat cancer, with marked advances in the treatment of lung, melanoma, genitourinary, hematologic, head and neck cancers, and more,” said Kim Thiboldeaux, CEO, Cancer Support Community. “This is why we are so excited to work with our pilot partners to improve the experience of patients receiving immunotherapy and to help establish clinical practice tools to advance quality care.”


Immunotherapy uses the body’s own immune system to fight cancer. Given the unique way immunotherapy engages the immune system, recognition and management of side effects can be challenging. Patients and health care teams share the responsibility of promptly reporting treatment-related symptoms, however, patients often require additional education, support, and resources to become active partners in their care.


Immunotherapy & Me addresses this by empowering patients to promptly report treatment-related side effects and by providing staff the resources to streamline patient education around symptom management. Immunotherapy & Me will be piloted at nine oncology practice sites for twelve months, including the collection and reporting of patient outcomes. A core component of this initiative will be assessing patient levels of distress using CSC’s CancerSupportSource® to document program impact on the overall patient experience. Immunotherapy & Me offers patients and staff three categories of activation tools: a web-based app to monitor treatment-related side effects; educational materials that are both immunotherapy-specific and general cancer information; and an expansion of CSC’s existing Cancer Support Helpline to include registered nurses to assist patients and families with concerns related to their clinical care.


“The tools and framework the Cancer Support Community provides through the Immunotherapy & Me pilot are invaluable to our team of physicians, nurses, social workers, navigators, and researchers,” said Dr. Lee Schwartzberg, MD, FACP, medical oncologist and Executive Director of the West Cancer Center based in Memphis, Tennessee. “By engaging a wide-variety of touchpoints—on-site, online, and, over the phone—we maximize patient engagement, can better monitor patient progress, and hope to improve patient outcomes.”


To read more, please visit https://globenewswire.com/news-release/2017/09/06/1108369/0/en/The-Cancer-Support-Community-Delivers-Groundbreaking-Immunotherapy-Support-and-Education-Program-to-Patients-and-Providers.html.