Oncology: A Field Connected Across Many Fronts

Oncology: A Field Connected Across Many Fronts

Jonathan S. Berek, MD, MMedSc, FASCO

Dec 17, 2015

It is no accident that our Society’s member publication is titled ASCO Connection— its mission is to connect members to ASCO, ASCO to its members, and members to each other. After all, connection is why we join professional societies in the first place: to be a part of something bigger than ourselves, to work together in service of a larger goal.

ASCO is the common thread that ties more than 40,000 oncology professionals together, and it connects us on many fronts.

We are connected by technology. Popular social media platforms have their share of detractors who judge that any use of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and others is trivial. I reject that classification. Social media is a powerful tool, and it can be used thoughtfully and purposefully to make incredible connections.

Our cover story describes just a few of the ways that ASCO and its members are taking advantage of the unprecedented opportunities offered by social media to gain and share knowledge, and to foster collaborations and relationships. And the best part is that these opportunities are available to anyone—to get started, all you require is an Internet connection or a data plan.

We are connected across geographic borders. We cannot forget that the enormous strides made against cancer in high-resource settings remain unattainable in many parts of the world. Dr. Yanin Chávarri-Guerra and Dr. Lawrence Shulman are among many dedicated ASCO members working to improve outcomes in places of great need.

We are connected across professional disciplines. Providing optimal care to people with cancer truly takes a village. Our Allied members, such as cancer survivor and psychiatrist Dr. James Randolph Hillard bring enormous passion, valuable experience, and crucial skills to ASCO and to our patients.

We are connected across generations. We have a particular responsibility to provide guidance to cancer care providers who are at the beginning of their professional journeys. I discuss how ASCO Connection will expand its coverage of trainee and early-career topics to better serve the needs of the next generation of leaders in our field.

Thank you for reading, and happy holidays!


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