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Global Curriculum in Research Literacy for the Surgical Oncologist

Leading Surgical Oncology Societies Call for Global Curriculum to address variations in the level of cancer-related research activity and correlation to cancer-specific mortality

Following the call for a Global Curriculum to address variations, inadequacies in training of surgical oncologists last year, The American Society of Surgical Oncology (SSO) and the European Society of Surgical Oncology (ESSO) have jointly published two more joint articles calling for a Global curriculum in research literacy for the surgical oncologist.

Efforts in cancer research have yielded innovative treatment strategies that have led to improved cancer outcomes. Although there are data that have highlighted variations in the level of cancer research, there are no data that have assessed variations in the level of cancer-related research activity and its correlation to global cancer-specific mortality. The aim of this study was to determine global variation in the level of cancer-related research activity and correlate this with the rate of cancer-specific mortality at a global level by analyzing data for each individual country. It must be noted that the intent of this paper was not to attribute causality between research activity and cancer-specific outcomes, which are likely to be complex with many confounding factors such as the size of the health economy, variations in academic environment and general health, access to screening and numerous other socio-cultural variables that vary according to the wealth of a nation.

The ability to provide optimal care to cancer patients depends on awareness of current evidence-based practices emanating from research or involvement in research where circumstances permit. The significant global variations in cancer-related research activity and its correlation to cancer-specific outcomes may have an influence on the care provided to cancer patients and their outcomes. The aim of this project is to develop a global curriculum in research literacy for the surgical oncologist.

The proposed global curriculum in research literacy is intended to promote research literacy and encourage involvement in research activity where circumstances permit. It is hoped that this will enhance cancer-related research activity, promote awareness of optimal evidence-based practices and improve outcomes for cancer patients globally.

The two surgical oncology societies together published their findings the December 2017 online issues of both the Annals of Surgical Oncology and the European Journal of Surgical Oncology. The companion articles can be found at:

European Journal of Surgical Oncology:

Global variations in the level of cancer-related research activity and correlation to cancer-specific mortality: Proposal for a global curriculum

Global curriculum in research literacy for the surgical oncologist

Annals of Surgical Oncology:

Global variations in the level of cancer-related research activity and correlation to cancer-specific mortality: Proposal for a global curriculum

Global curriculum in research literacy for the surgical oncologist

Members of the SSO/ESSO Joint Global Curriculum Committee included: Chandrakanth Are, MD, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, Neb. (SSO); Riccardo A. Audisio, MD, University of Liverpool, St. Helens, U.K. (ESSO); Russell S. Berman, MD, New York University School of Medicine, New York, NY (SSO); Lynda Wyld, University of Sheffield, Sheffield, UK (ESSO); Charmaine Cummings, RN, Society of Surgical Oncology, Rosemont, Ill. (SSO); and, Carine Lecoq (ESSO).

About the Society of Surgical Oncology

The Society of Surgical Oncology (SSO) is the premier organization for surgeons and health care providers dedicated to advancing and promoting the science and treatment of cancer. The Society’s focus on all solid-tumor disease sites is reflected in its Annual Cancer Symposium, monthly scientific journal (Annals of Surgical Oncology), educational initiatives and committee structure. The Society’s mission is to improve multidisciplinary patient care by advancing the science, education and practice of cancer surgery worldwide.

About the European Society of Surgical Oncology

The European Society of Surgical Oncology (ESSO) represents over 20,000 cancer surgeons both within Europe and globally. ESSO’s mission is to support its members in advancing the science and practice of surgical oncology for the benefit of cancer patients through a range of activities including education with a comprehensive educational programme delivered worldwide and its journal, European Journal of Surgical Oncology, research (developing a portfolio of clinical trials in surgical oncology in partnership with the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer) and leadership in multidisciplinary care. ESSO's vision is to disseminate the most appropriate cancer treatment to all cancer patients, regardless of where they reside. ESSO is developing standards of care for cancer patients through its core values: education; homogenization of skills; quality; and ultimately qualification.

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