Society problems

Cactus Cancer Society Advocates New Standard of Support for Understudied and Underserved Young Adults Facing Cancer

SAN FRANCISCO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Cactus Cancer Society, the first virtual community created by and for young adults facing cancer, today announced the launch of The Complete AYA Cancer Picturethe first-ever comprehensive continuing education course available for healthcare professionals to learn how to meet the unique needs of young adults with cancer, survivors and caregivers.

In collaboration with the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, the Cactus Cancer Society will present the six-part online series from September 14 to November 22, 2022. The program includes expert guests and live interactive workshops, providing free continuing education credits to healthcare professionals who want to fill the knowledge gap surrounding young adults with cancer. Sessions include:

  • Why AYAs are unique
  • Sexuality and contraception for AYAs
  • Fertility preservation for AYA
  • AYA Survivorship Care and Survivorship Care Plans (SCPs)
  • The emotional impact of cancer on AYAs
  • Resources for AYAs with Cancer

“The survival rate for this specific age group has not changed since the Nixon era,” said Mallory Casperson, co-founder and CEO of Cactus Cancer Society, referring to known data in oncology that the cancer survival decreases after 18 years and improves after 39 years. “Disparities continue to exist for this unique population, including a lack of research, education for healthcare professionals, and access to healthcare for young adult cancer survivors. We aim to bring about change by resetting this traditional mindset and raising awareness of the unique challenges these brave young adults face and improving their long-term quality of life. It’s time to close the gap!

Each year, more than 90,000 young adults (ages 18-39) are diagnosed with cancer, dramatically altering the future they had planned. Recent studies of young adults with cancer have found that quality of life, social functioning, mental health, finances, body image, work plans, romantic relationships and plans to have children were all negatively affected due to their cancer diagnosis. In addition to a higher prevalence of aggressive diseases in this age group, AYA patients have the potential for long-term effects of their diagnosis and treatment, including infertility, sexual dysfunction, heart problems and future cancers. With less than 1% of cancer research focused on the needs of AYAs, these patients have historically been largely ignored in research studies and by healthcare institutions.

The series is hosted by acclaimed author Dr. Anne Katz, sexuality counselor, nurse and host of Cactus Cancer Society clumsy aunt program, where she answers questions about sex, relationships, and everything that happens to the body during and after cancer treatment.

“A diagnosis of cancer is difficult at any age, but these young patients are typically at a stage in life where they are progressing in their education, forging their independence, or starting their own careers or families,” said Lauren Creel, MSW, MPH . , social worker and chief operating officer of the Cactus Cancer Society. “A unique skill set is needed to provide high-quality support and care to these young adults, and we hope this program will educate and encourage current and future care providers to bring new knowledge to their professions – ultimately. account, reshaping healthcare to work better for the AYA community.

In addition to The Complete AYA Cancer PictureCactus Cancer Society and The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society are collaborating to conduct a continuing education program for healthcare professionals titled Nourish, Nourish and Renew: A Roadmap from Burnout to Self-Care. The Cactus Cancer Society’s major ongoing creative coping programs for young adults facing cancer range from journaling, art workshops and book clubs to yoga, meditation, LGBTQIA+ programs, well-being events being, hangouts, research focus groups, and more. In December, the Cactus Cancer Society will host the annual YA Cancer Gabfest, a week-long online conference about survivorship for young adults facing cancer.

About the Cactus Cancer Society

Cactus Cancer Society, a nonprofit that helps end the isolation of young adults with cancer, survivors and caregivers, is a leader in online wellness support programs and resources and cancer survivors – see the video. The first virtual community created by and for young adults facing cancer, Cactus Cancer Society offers a full range of free and groundbreaking online access to psychosocial survivorship support through media tailored to the group’s lifestyle. age 18-45 years old. All programs and resources are provided directly through the Cactus Cancer Society website or through Zoom and are uniquely accessible regardless of a patient’s specific diagnosis, geographic location, financial situation, or medical status. hospitalization. Since its inception in 2015, Cactus Cancer Society (formerly Lacuna Loft) has provided a safe space where young adults facing cancer can connect, cope and thrive with each other through creativity and expression. in an online community that enables resilience, courage and courage. . Learn more at and follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

About the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society® (LLS) is a world leader in the fight against blood cancer. The mission of the LLS: To cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and to improve the quality of life of patients and their families. The LLS funds vital blood cancer research worldwide, provides free information and support services, and is the voice for all blood cancer patients seeking access to quality coordinated care. , affordable. Founded in 1949 and headquartered in Rye Brook, NY, LLS has regions across the United States and Canada. To learn more, visit Patients should contact the Information Resource Center at (800) 955-4572, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. ET.