ACCC Community Oncology Research Institute Releases Groundbreaking Call To Action to Strengthen and Diversify Cancer Research

In Partnership With:

Partner | Oncology Societies | <b>Association of Community Cancer Centers</b>

The Association of Community Cancer Centers announced today the release of consensus-driven recommendations to improve diversity, equity, and accessibility in cancer research.

The Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC) announced today the release of consensus-driven recommendations to improve diversity, equity, and accessibility in cancer research.

“The ACORI Summit jumpstarted critical conversations on health equity in cancer care research, including the roles—and responsibilities—oncology programs and practices have to carry out equitable and accessible research,” said ACCC President Krista Nelson, MSW, LCSW, OSW-C, FAOSW. “But the most important message we heard was the need to bring the patient and community perspectives into the research process.”

This message was first in a list of action items for ACCC, joining the recommendation to strengthen connections between oncology programs and relevant stakeholder organizations through mentorship and networking, working sessions to share best practices, and opportunities to build capacity.

To do this, ACCC must develop and actively share—in partnership with key stakeholders—tools and resources that oncology programs can use to effectively incorporate patient and community perspectives into their work. High-value resources include tools for patient and community engagement, quality needs assessments, and case studies of best practices for community-based cancer research studies.

These action items and other recommendations were released as part of the executive summary report from the ACCC Community Oncology Research Institute (ACORI) Call to Action Summit, a virtual event that brought together more than 120 stakeholders representing oncology programs and practices, research teams and networks, patient advocates, trial sponsors, industry representatives, and regulatory agencies. The Summit was hosted in collaboration with Stand Up to Cancer.

The report also identified action items and recommendations specific to oncology programs and other stakeholders, such as industry sponsors, large academic centers, and any organization involved in trial design, implementation, and results dissemination.

Action items for oncology programs include: 1) understand the unique needs of their communities, barriers to research participation, and community resources that can help improve trial enrollment and retention; 2) engage directly with patients and caregivers to embed their experiences and perspectives in the research process; and 3) build capacity to conduct equitable and patient-centered research.

Among other recommendations, the report asks industry sponsors and others involved in trial design to actively identify and partner with oncology programs serving understudied and underserved patients.

ACORI, the research arm of ACCC, was created in 2021 to close the gap in cancer research by establishing clinical trials as a standard of care in treatment plans and to help achieve equitable cancer care delivery for all patients. To do so, ACORI is focused on making sustainable changes in the way that clinical trials are created, practiced, and discussed in the communities they are representing. Learn more about ACORI and the Executive Summary here.

About the Association of Community Cancer Centers

The Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC) is the leading education and advocacy organization for the cancer care community. Founded in 1974, ACCC is a powerful network of 28,000 multidisciplinary practitioners from 2,100 hospitals and practices nationwide. As advances in cancer screening and diagnosis, treatment options, and care delivery models continue to evolve - so has ACCC - adapting its resources to meet the changing needs of the entire oncology care team. For more information, visit Follow us on social media; read our blog, ACCCBuzz; tune in to our CANCER BUZZ podcast; and view our CANCER BUZZ TV channel.