From The Editor October 2023

TON - October 2023 Vol 16, No 5
Catherine Bishop, DNP, NP-C, AOCNP
Hematology/Oncology Nurse Practitioner

We are pleased to present the October issue of The Oncology Nurse-APN/ PA (TON), a journal specifically designed to educate and inform nurses, navigators, and advanced practice providers who care for patients with cancer.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, so we begin this issue with an interview with Sueann Mark, MS, PhD, RN, AOCNS, Breast Imaging Nurse Navigator, University of California San Francisco (UCSF) Health, and Assistant Clinical Professor, UCSF School of Nursing. During this interview, she shares what inspired her to choose a career in nursing, her day-to-day responsibilities, the most rewarding and challenging aspects of the job, her work as a breast cancer advocate, and how she maintains a healthy life/work balance (see here).

Next, we turn our attention to an important presentation by a panel of experts who discussed the mismatch between populations participating in clinical trials and real-world oncology patients, as well as potential solutions to improve the accrual of patients from various underserved populations (see here).

During the presentation, Lola A. Fashoyin-Aje, MD, MPH, discussed the creation of a new FDA Oncology Center of Excellence initiative called Project Equity, which is addressing disparities in clinical trial participation through outreach engagement, policy development, and research.

“Multilevel and multistakeholder action are need to effectively and sustainably improve the evidence supporting oncology clinical care,” she told attendees at the 2023 American Society of Clinical Oncology Annual Meeting, where the session took place.

Here, you will learn about ZERO Prostate Cancer, a national nonprofit that provides patients with prostate cancer and their families with comprehensive support through a wide array of services, including its ZERO360 program, which pairs individuals with trained case managers who help them navigate insurance, reduce out-of-pocket costs, and access psychosocial and peer-to-peer support services. The organization also partners with continuing medical education providers to better inform healthcare professionals on the specific needs of patients diagnosed with prostate cancer to ensure that they receive the highest quality of care.

“We know that not only do patients and their families need to be well-informed, active participants in their care, but we also must ensure that the healthcare community has the resources they need to stay ahead of all the exciting advances in the treatment and diagnostics landscape,” Shelby Moneer, ZERO’s Vice President of Patient Programs and Education, said.

Here, we provide readers with an overview of new research on the development of liquid biopsy tests that can be used specifically in children with cancer, which may be helpful for diagnosing solid tumors more accurately and evaluating the efficacy of treatments in this population of patients.

As in every TON issue, we have also included the latest safety and efficacy data on agents and combination regimens being assessed in clinical trials for various malignancies, as well as a roundup of new oncology drugs and new indications approved by the FDA (here).

We hope that you will enjoy this issue of TON, and we invite you to visit to share your feedback with us. You can also send an e-mail with any questions or comments you may have to

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