WASHINGTON, Sept. 21, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- The Biden Cancer Initiative today convened a national Biden Cancer Summit, with the anchor event in Washington, D.C., and more than 450 Community Summits held where people live, work, learn and worship around the country. The effort brings together thousands of people to focus national attention on the "urgency of now" to create actionable solutions in the fight against cancer.
Participants from across sectors, disciplines and backgrounds actively explored solutions to some of the most complicated challenges standing in the way of progress – from sharing and standardizing data to addressing value and coverage of lifesaving treatments. The D.C. Summit culminated in a Cancer Town Hall with Vice President Joe Biden and experts in cancer prevention, research, care and survivorship fielding questions from a broad-based audience.
The Biden Cancer Initiative also today announced more than 50 new commitments. These are public and private sector efforts developed in response to Vice President Joe Biden and Dr. Jill Biden's call to double the rate of progress against cancer. These announcements include:
- Airbnb's expansion of its Open Homes platform to include medical stays, allowing hosts both in the United States and around the world to open their homes for free to those traveling for medical treatment or respite;
- The "Health Record Wizard" project by X4 Health which is a new tool that allows patients to leverage their HIPAA "right of access" to their own electronic medical records;
- Family Reach's partnership with AbbVie that allows it to expand financial services to 25 hospitals in 25 states across the country, enhancing financial support for an estimated 4,400 additional families;
- WeWork's new Collaboration Hubs providing the space, platform and people for researchers, patients, caretakers and survivors to share information and collaborate to fight cancer together; and
- National Minority Quality Forum's Cancer Index Atlas, a portal providing 2016 patient-level data for breast, colorectal, prostate, lung, endometrial and blood cancers to address cancer health equity concerns.
For a complete list of commitments, please visit www.bidencancer.org/commitments.
Throughout the day, on stage at the Summit in D.C. and on social media, people shared stories epitomizing what it means to be cancer FIERCE — from community activists to Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, WWE legends to football players, chief medical officers to science phenoms. This builds on the Biden Cancer Initiative's #cancerFIERCE campaign to tell stories of purpose, resilience and strength.
In addition, global communities – from San Marcos, Texas, to San Pedro Sula, Honduras, from Erbil, Iraq, to Ithaca, New York — were able to engage in real-time, immersive conversations about the shared cancer experience through Shared Studios Portals.
Jill Biden, co-chair of the Biden Cancer Initiative, said: "Today's summit is about finding solutions. Right now, if we stopped new research entirely, if we never spent another dime on lab studies to find new cures — we could still save thousands more lives by doing one thing: breaking down the barriers between the various branches of this movement and sharing the data that already exists. If researchers were able to access all of this data, they could find new answers – like finding patterns in the stars, researchers could find new patterns in the data to help us understand how to best target therapies to particular cancers or where disparities in outcomes are the most severe, so that we could target prevention and screening programs."
Vice President Joe Biden, co-chair of the Biden Cancer Initiative, said: "Our focus is straightforward: to create the cancer research and care system that most people think we already have — and that we all deserve. We are delighted and overwhelmed with people and institutions offering their help and ideas, but we can't claim victory until we have changed the things we cannot accept. We cannot accept disparities in outcomes by race, gender and zip code. We cannot accept unaffordable treatments. We cannot accept business-as-usual practices in research and care when there is nothing 'usual' about a cancer diagnosis."
Summit main-stage programs online at www.bidencancer.org/summit.
Join the conversation online: #BidenCancerSummit.
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SOURCE Biden Cancer Initiative