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State cancer plan has robust input and commitment from Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center

May. 21, 2020, 2:48 PM


by Tom Wilemon

More than a dozen representatives of Vanderbilt University Medical Center helped plan and made a commitment to help carry out the strategy for how Tennessee will prevent cancer and minimize its burden on state residents.

A total of 16 physicians, researchers and educators from Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center (VICC) collaborated with the Tennessee Cancer Coalition, Tennessee Department of Health and other statewide partners to create the Tennessee State Cancer Plan 2018-2022. The plan sets the framework for how Tennessee will participate in and receive funding from the National Comprehensive Cancer Control Program. The state has been a recipient of program grants since 2003.

The plan addresses multiple types of cancer, particularly those that are more prevalent in Tennessee. Some of the priorities include lifestyle strategies for cancer prevention, screening and early detection initiatives and measures to improve quality of life for survivors.

Jennifer Pietenpol, PhD, Executive Vice President for Research at VUMC and director of VICC, commended the group for their work.

“We cannot meet our mission by only treating people with cancer or spending time in research labs. We must be engaged at the state and regional levels with others who are also working to prevent cancer and improve the lives of people affected by cancer. I appreciate my colleagues’ leadership and commitment of their time to this important plan,” said Pietenpol, B.F. Byrd Jr. Professor of Oncology and holder of the Brock Family Directorship in Career Development.

Representatives of VICC on the steering committee for the Tennessee State Cancer Plan include Jordan Berlin, MD, Ingram Professor of Cancer Research; Debra Friedman, MD, E. Bronson Ingram Chair of Pediatric Oncology; Jaleesa Moore, PhD; Tuya Pal, MD, Ingram Associate Professor of Cancer Research and Xiao-Ou Shu, MD, PhD, MPH, Ingram Professor of Cancer Research.

Others are members of working groups. They include Melinda Aldrich, PhD, MPH, associate professor of Medicine; Ronald Alvarez, MD, MBA, Betty and Lonnie S. Burnett Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology; Claudia Barajas, community engagement manager; Derek Griffith, PhD, associate professor of Medicine; Mohana Karlekar, MD, assistant professor of Medicine; Pamela Hull, PhD, associate professor of Medicine; Rondi Kauffmann, MD, assistant professor of Surgery; Pierre Massion, MD, Cornelius Vanderbilt Chair in Medicine; Caree McAfee, MA, senior program manager; Kelvin Moses, MD, PhD, associate professor of Urology and Hilary Tindle, MD, MPH, associate professor of Medicine.

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