Stand Up To Cancer to Offer Training Modules for Nurses on Front Lines of Administering New Cancer Therapies
Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C) announces the development of a series of Certification for Nursing Education (CNE) training modules by experts from Boston College William F. Connell School of Nursing. The CNE modules will equip nurses with the skills and knowledge needed to manage the unique challenges and patient symptoms that accompany administration of emerging immunotherapies to treat cancer. The first of a series of the three web-based SU2C-Boston College Immunotherapy CNE modules will be available to nurses in July 2016.
“Nurses are essential collaborators in translational cancer research, bringing new and effective treatments from the research laboratory to the patient,” stated SU2C President and CEO, Sung Poblete, RN, PhD who holds a PhD in Nursing from Rutgers University. “SU2C is at the forefront of immunoncology research and we recognize that an essential part of bringing these cutting-edge therapies to patients is the effective dissemination of information about the treatments. Nurses play an integral role in patient management and these modules will provide a new toolkit for patient care.”
This announcement comes as part of National Nurses Week (May 6-12) as a way to both celebrate the profession and their important contribution to cancer research.
Since nurses are on the front lines of patient care in the fight against cancer, the goals of this program are to develop an innovative tool kit to provide nurses with the best training possible to help care for patients as they undergo new and innovative cancer treatment therapies. The program will consist of three distinct SU2C-Boston College Immunotherapy CNE modules to address the specific challenges of providing care for cancer patients receiving immunotherapy, including education on immunology and related pathophysiology, symptom management, and nursing interventions to reduce symptom distress and promote wellness. The pilot program consisting of the three modules, the first available in July 2016, and the others available later in the summer and fall 2016. Eligible participants can register for the program by visitinghttp://www.standup2cancer.org/nursingeducation. In its first round, the program will seek to train 25 nurses working in immunotherapy. These modules will meet CNE standards and each module will provide 3.5 – 5 contact hours from the Boston College William F. Connell School of Nursing.
“One of the benefits of this program is that nurses anywhere/everywhere will have the ability to learn cutting edge information about specialized cancer treatment modalities,” stated Dean of the William F. Connell School of Nursing, Susan Gennaro, RN PhD. “Nurses will also gain information to promote patient health and improve the management of patient’s symptoms and responses to cancer treatment. Nurses, even if they are not affiliated with major cancer centers, will find these timely modules extremely useful. We, at the William F. Connell School of Nursing are very proud to collaborate with Stand Up To Cancer on this much needed initiative.”
Cancer immunotherapy harnesses the body’s own immune system to attack cancers, and is a promising and rapidly growing area in cancer research and treatment. In one approach, drugs called checkpoint inhibitors are used to foil the “tricks” that cancers rely on to escape natural immune cell attack. In the other approach, known as adoptive cell transfer (ACT), patients’ own immune cells are taken to the lab, made into efficient cancer killing “armies” and returned to the patient. By optimizing these two approaches, as well as combining them together and with other treatments, Stand Up To Cancer researchers from Dream Teams across its portfolio, including the SU2C-CRI Immunology Dream Team; SU2C-American Cancer Society Lung Cancer Dream Team; VARI-SU2C Epigenetics Dream Team; SU2C-Lustgarten Pancreatic Dream Team; SU2C-St. Baldrick’s Pediatric Dream Team; SU2C-OCRFA-NOCC Ovarian Cancer Dream Team; SU2C-Farrah Fawcett Foundation Translational Research Team, among others, expect to achieve long-lasting responses in a large percentage of patients suffering from a variety of types of cancer. As these therapies continue to develop, support from well trained nurses is necessary to continue to push the research forward.
“Emerging immunotherapy drugs are showing great promise in treating a broad range of hard-to-treat cancers and are quickly becoming a critical component of care for many oncology patients,” said Alan Lotvin, MD, Executive Vice President of CVS Specialty, the specialty pharmacy of CVS Health. “As these therapies gain traction in practice, we are also seeing the role of the oncology nurse expand, and we’re proud to support the SU2C-Boston College CNE curriculum as it is designed to provide oncology nurses with practical, evidence-based tools to help them better support and care for their cancer patients undergoing immunotherapy.”
SU2C’s investment in patient and professional education is made possible by the donations of generous individual and corporate collaborators, including CVS Health, whose specialty pharmacy provides services for patients requiring treatment for rare and complex conditions, including cancer. Development of these CNE modules expands the collaboration between CVS Health and SU2C, which also includes a three-year, $10 million commitment by CVS Health to support the SU2C research and awareness portfolio.
About the Author
Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C) raises funds to accelerate the pace of research to get new therapies to patients quickly and save lives now. SU2C, a program of the Entertainment Industry Foundation (EIF), a 501(c)(3) charitable organization, was established in 2008 by film and media leaders who utilize the industry’s resources to engage the public in supporting a new, collaborative model of cancer research, and to increase awareness about cancer prevention as well as progress being made in the fight against the disease. As SU2C’s scientific partner, the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) and a Scientific Advisory Committee led by Nobel Laureate Phillip A. Sharp, PhD, conduct rigorous, competitive review processes to identify the best research proposals to recommend for funding, oversee grants administration, and provide expert review of research progress. Current members of the SU2C Council of Founders and Advisors (CFA) include Katie Couric, Sherry Lansing, Lisa Paulsen, Rusty Robertson, Sue Schwartz, Pamela Oas Williams, Ellen Ziffren, and Kathleen Lobb. The late Laura Ziskin was also a co-founder. SU2C was formally launched on May 27, 2008. Sung Poblete, Ph.D., R.N., has served as SU2C’s president since 2011.