National Center for Healthcare Advancement and Partnerships
OCE Partnership Impact
This February 4 is recognized as World Cancer Day, an observance led by the Union for International Cancer Control to raise awareness and improve education around cancer to save lives. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) have many resources available for Veterans—and their caregivers, families, and loved ones—who have been diagnosed with cancer, such as VA’s National Oncology Program Office and the VA Office of Research and Development’s major accomplishments in cancer research.
Many of the resources VA and VHA make available to Veterans who live with cancer are through partnerships with nongovernmental organizations. As the partnership experts within VHA, Office of Community Engagement (OCE) staff members support many of these collaborations. In honor of this World Cancer Day, three VHA partners spoke about their work on behalf of Veterans diagnosed with cancer.
VA’s partnership with American Lung Association helps improve the lives of Veterans diagnosed with lung diseases. The American Lung Association’s efforts in this partnership will add to the training that VA clinicians already have, in order to determine Veterans’ smoking history and connect Veterans who smoke to evidence-based methods for quitting.
“The American Lung Association is committed to raising awareness of the number-one cancer killer of women and men through this important global observance, World Cancer Day. We are proud to partner with VA to continue supporting Veterans living with lung cancer and to prevent the future burden of this disease,” said American Lung Association National President and CEO Harold Wimmer.
American Cancer Society, Inc. (ACS) is working on a partnership with VA with an emphasis on access to lung cancer education and relevant resources. Right now, ACS has a support line (1-800-227-2345) in addition to the important lung cancer information and resources available on its website.
“World Cancer Day is a day for the world to unite against all cancers, and it also reminds us in the United States to unite against cancer nationally and in our communities. The ACS strongly supports our nation’s Veterans and looks forward to a growing partnership that better addresses their lung cancer needs,” said Jennifer Greenwald, vice president for mission strategy and operations at ACS.
GO2 Foundation for Lung Cancer aims to increase awareness about lung cancer screening options to improve outcomes for Veterans impacted by the disease. The organization also has many supportive services available for Veterans on its website.
“Every year there are 7,700 Veterans diagnosed with lung cancer by VA alone and an estimated 900,000 remain at risk due to age, smoking, and other occupational exposures during and after military service. It is of utmost significance on World Cancer Day to highlight lung cancer screening as a priority for Veterans,” said Laurie Fenton Ambrose, CEO, co-founder, and president of GO2 Foundation. “Our partnership with VA/VHA is a major milestone and opportunity in increasing awareness, supporting lung cancer screening initiatives, and improving outcomes for Veterans impacted by this disease in the United States and worldwide.”
For more information on these and other OCE partnerships, please visit VA.gov/healthpartnerships.
Posted February 4, 2021