The International Psycho-Oncology Society (IPOS) announced four award winners at the 2015 World Congress of Psycho-Oncology, held July 28 to August 1 in Washington, DC.
Arthur M. Sutherland Award: William H. Redd, PhD
Dr. Redd is Professor of Oncological Sciences at the Mount Sinai Hospital. He is credited with introducing behavioral psychology and behavioral medicine to oncology; he identified the role of respondent and operant conditioning in the development of cancer treatment side effects, recognizing the severe conditioned aversions patients can develop as they undergo their treatments. He then went on to develop distraction and other intervention techniques to help patients counter these conditioned effects.
Bernard Fox Memorial Award: Susanne O. Dalton, MD, PhD
Dr. Dalton is a Senior Researcher in Survivorship Unit of the Danish Cancer Research Council, and conducts research primarily focusing on social inequality in cancer and on physical, psychological, and socioeconomic consequences of cancer. Since 2011, she has been head of the Research Group on Social Inequality in Survivorship. She leads a series of studies exploring issues of cancer among patients with mental illness, and in another series, delineated the roles of sociodemographic factors in cancer survivorship. Her work has contributed significantly to the evidence base highlighting social inequalities that can exist in cancer care and recovery.
Noemi Fishman Award for Lifetime Clinical Excellence: Andrew J. Roth, MD
Since 2007, Dr. Roth has been the Training Program Director for the clinical psycho- oncology fellowship training program at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. He has pioneered the field of prostate cancer psycho-oncology, being among the first psychiatrist in the world specializing primarily in the psychiatric and psychosocial problems of men with prostate cancer. Notably, Dr. Roth was in the team that developed the “Distress Thermometer,” now widely used as a tool to identify distress in patients with cancer. He has supervised and helped train over 100 clinical fellows in psycho-oncology.
Hiroomi Kawano New Investigator Award: Katriina Whitaker, PhD, CPsychol
Dr. Whittaker is currently Senior Lecturer at the University of Surrey. Her doctoral thesis involved a novel application of theoretical models from the study of anxiety disorders to investigate anxiety in cancer patients, establishing the importance of involuntary thoughts, memories, and images in explaining mood disorder in these patients, and identifying an additional role for negative appraisals by patients of these experiences. She demonstrated the clinical utility of this research by using a psychological intervention specifically targeted on these maintaining processes, reducing associated distress substantially. ■