American/International Psychosocial Oncology Societies Host Event to Support Science and Practice of Psychosocial Care for Patients With Cancer 

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Jimmie C. Holland, MD, and James F. Holland, MD

Recently the American Psychosocial Oncology Society (APOS) and the International Psycho-Oncology Society (IPOS) held a fundraising event, Cruise for a Cause: Improving Psychosocial and Supportive Cancer Care, to raise money to advance the science and practice of psychosocial care for patients with cancer. The event was held onboard a private motor yacht, Francine, which cruised around the Hudson River in New York. More than 50 guests attended the event.

Screening Programs for Psychosocial Distress in Cancer Centers

The cruise included a discussion by Ruth McCorkle, PhD, RN, the Yale School of Nursing Florence S. Wald Professor of Nursing and Professor of Epidemiology; Director of Psycho-Oncology at the Smilow Cancer Center at Yale New Haven Hospital; and a cofounder of APOS, and Mark Lazenby, PhD, Director of APOS, on a 5-year educational program at APOS, the National Institutes of Health, and Yale New Haven Hospital to promote the use of screening programs for psychosocial distress in cancer centers. The discussion was moderated by Jimmie C. Holland, MD, Wayne E. Chapman Chair at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, and founder of APOS and IPOS.

Psychosocial Care as a Human Right

Dr. Holland also moderated a discussion presented by James F. Holland, MD, Professor of Medicine, Hematology and Medical Oncology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. Dr. James Holland talked about his work with the African Organization for Research and Training in Cancer (AORTIC), an African-based nongovernmental organization that is dedicated to promoting cancer control and palliation in Africa. Dr. Holland is an Honorary Member of AORTIC.

In Africa, cancer is increasingly becoming a critical public health problem with cervical cancer among the most frequently diagnosed cancers and leading causes of cancer death in women. In November, AORTIC will hold its 9th International Cancer Conference, “Cancer in Africa: Bridging Science & Humanity,” in Durban, South Africa. The conference will bring together an international group of oncology health care professionals, patient advocates, and government leaders to discuss how the impact of cancer can be reduced in African nations.

In addition to improving medical care for patients with cancer in Africa, Dr. James Holland stressed the importance of treating the psychological side effects of having cancer as well. “Psychosocial cancer care is a human right,” said Dr. Holland.

For More Information

To learn more about psychosocial oncology and the medical care of patients with cancer in Africa, visit: