There is a growing trend among National Cancer Institute designated Cancer Centers to establish initiatives and institutes that support cancer survivorship care and translational research. Cancer Survivorship and Translational Behavioral Sciences at the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center of the University of Miami serves as a nexus for the intersection of transformative clinical and research approaches to cancer survivorship.
We seek to bring together clinicians and scientists across multiple disciplines to foster exceptional and specialized cancer survivorship care and research, ensure implementation of evidence-based and state of the art survivorship care, and avoid fragmentation of services across the UHealth system.
Our patient centered approach to survivorship brings together comprehensive supportive oncology services including psychosocial, rehabilitative, integrative and palliative care, among others. Several specialized survivorship medical clinics will address the unique needs of cancer survivors such as late effects and long-term effects of treatment, lifestyle factors and comorbidities, surveillance and screening for recurrences or secondary cancers, and coordination of care among providers.
These clinics, along with our Cancer Control (CC) research program, which houses our survivorship research base, and our patients at Sylvester provide the platform for translational survivorship research including cancer care delivery, assessment and intervention research initiatives. Research initiatives capitalize from clinical operations such as Phase I clinics (e.g., toxicities monitoring), ambulatory care clinics (e.g., symptom assessment and management) and precision care (e.g., patient engagement in genomic sequencing).The Cancer Survivorship and Translational Behavioral Sciences Initiative is intended to be able to support and foster evidence-based and programmatic oversight of symptom monitoring, care delivery and electronic health record integration.
- Encompasses the physical, psychosocial, and economic effects of cancer diagnosis and its treatment.
- Includes issues related to health care delivery, access, and follow up care, in cancer survivors.
- Focuses on the health and life of a person beyond the acute diagnosis and treatment phase.
- Seeks to both prevent and control adverse cancer diagnosis and treatment-related outcomes such as late effects treatment, second cancers, and poor quality of life.
- Provides a knowledge base regarding excellent follow-up care and surveillance of cancers, and to optimize health after cancer treatment.
Cancer survivorship includes a wide range of research. Examples of survivorship research include:
- Systematic assessment and management of symptoms and toxicities
- Psychosocial behavioral interventions designed to promote quality of life and reduce symptom burden
- Biobehavioral mechanisms underlying associations between stress, psychosocial factors and symptom burden
- Disease activity and survival
- Cultural adaptations of survivorship interventions
- eHealth programs that target symptom management, healthy lifestyle, and care delivery in cancer survivors
Survivorship research is closely tied with the Cancer Control Research Program at the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center. The Cancer Control Research Program is made up of over 30 faculty members who are involved in multiple research studies addressing a wide range of survivorship research questions spanning from biological mechanisms to population health.
- The process and application of transforming behavioral science research conducted in research settings into clinic and community-based applications that can improve the health of individuals and populations.
- Translation of measurement and intervention science to clinical applications creates opportunities to enhance care and further conduct cancer care delivery research.