DEI at the Annual Meeting

ASTRO is working to expand its initiatives and education about diversity, health equity and inclusion in health care. This track is dedicated to diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) and appears in educational sessions as well as the science program in order to provide a well-rounded annual meeting experience while expanding professionals' social awareness on DEI within radiation oncology. See below for the DEI sessions and Oral Abstracts available to registrants of the 2022 ASTRO Annual Meeting.


Educational Sessions on DEI

Examining our Past and Present Diversity to Achieve a More Equitable and Inclusive Future for Radiation Oncology

Monday, October 24, 2022 | 8:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.
Location TBD

To achieve health equity in oncology, the field of radiation oncology must strive to cultivate a diverse, culturally-responsive workforce that reflects the communities we serve where all members feel valued and have a sense of belonging. Currently, radiation oncology ranks near the bottom in terms of representation of women and Black and Hispanic individuals compared to other fields. Recently, ASTRO has publicly affirmed its commitment to improve equity, diversity and inclusion in patient care, our workforce and health policy, including an investment in strategic transformation. As we envision a bright future, it is necessary to examine our past and current state. The history of our field includes many diverse pioneers who must be recognized and celebrated to honor their achievements. They also serve as inspiring role models. From leaders such as Juan Del Regato to Vera Peters to William E. Allen, this session will explore the contributions and stories of our diverse founders in addition to examining where we are presently. By highlighting the excellence that accompanies diversity, we hope attendees will commit to taking meaningful action in achieving an equitable and inclusive future for radiation oncology.

Moderators: 

Malika Siker, MD, Medical College of Wisconsin
Naomi Schechter, MD, University of Southern California

Speakers:

  • Charles Thomas Jr., MD, FASTRO, Oregon Health & Science University
  • Curtiland Deville Jr., MD, Johns Hopkins University
  • Shekinah Elmore, MD, MPH, University of North Carolina

ASTRO/ECOG-ACRIN Joint Session – Addressing LGBTQ+ Health Equity and Disparities in Cancer Care

Monday, October 24, 2022 | 10:45 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Location TBD

This joint session was developed between the American Society for Radiology Oncology (ASTRO) and ECOG-ACRIN Cancer Research Group (ECOG-ACRI). This Education Session will provide radiation oncology professionals with an introduction to the unique needs and concerns of LGBTQ+ patients with cancer. Leading field experts will provide attendees with knowledge regarding LGBTQ+ terminology, cancer disparities and common care concerns of LGBTQ+ patients and their chosen families. Additionally, ways to eliminate bias and create a welcoming practice environment, including development of inclusive intake forms, evaluation of a clinic space and inclusive resources will be discussed. Lastly, participants will obtain insight into the importance of collecting sexual orientation and gender identity demographic data; approaches to make research protocols more inclusive, especially in terms of gender identity and those at the intersection of multiple, diverse identities (e.g., transgender and gender-diverse individuals of color); and how to incorporate such information toward providing equitable cancer care and reducing cancer disparities for this community.

Moderators: 

Jason Domogauer, MD, PhD, New York University Langone Health
Stephanie Terezakis, MD, University of Minnesota

Speakers:

  • Stephanie Terezakis, MD, University of Minnesota
  • Jason Domogauer, MD, PhD, New York University Langone Health
  • Matthew Schabath, PhD, Moffitt Cancer Center
  • Shilpen Patel, MD, FASTRO, Genentech

A Toolkit for Promoting Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in Your Practice

Tuesday, October 25, 2022 | 5:15 p.m. - 6:15 p.m.
Location TBD

This session will provide attendees with a toolkit to address common challenges in DEI that can be readily adapted and incorporated in a variety of radiation oncology departments. It will first provide a broad overview of available data describing ways in which radiation oncology departments are successfully integrating leadership and committee work in DEI into their department culture to promote positive changes. A series of challenging scenarios and vignettes will be discussed by the panelists to explore tools for successfully managing real-world barriers, and promoting both workforce diversity and health equity in oncology. Some specific topics that will be covered include building an effective training environment for faculty, staff and trainees in concepts of DEI, creating a welcoming environment for minority students and trainees, avoiding bias in performance reviews, addressing microaggressions in the workplace, how to be an effective ally in the workplace, recognizing and rewarding excellence in DEI and using rigorous and evidence-based approaches to study and address health disparities in one’s community. This will be followed by a Q&A period so that the panelists can address additional challenges that participants in the session have faced in their own practice environments.

Moderator: 

Fumiko Chino, MD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

Speakers:

  • Malcolm Mattes, MD, Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey
  • Kristina Woodhouse, MD, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
  • Raymond Mailhot Vega, MPH, University of Florida Proton Therapy Institute

Data-driven Approaches to Promoting Enrollment of Women, Racial, Ethnic, Sexual and Gender Minorities and Elderly Patients in Clinical Trials: Pathways for Future Success

Wednesday, October 26, 2022 | 8:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.
Location TBD

Despite attempts to increase representation of women and minorities in clinical trials, there appears to be little improvement. Multiple barriers exist that disproportionately affect underrepresented populations. In this session, attendees will learn from a panel of experts about the challenges involved in trial enrollment. First, the session chair, Parul Barry, MD, will provide background information on barriers to clinical trial enrollment and frame the discussion with a case of a 70-year-old African American cis-gendered woman who was eligible but unable to enroll on NSABPB-51/RTOG 1304 while living in NYC during the COVID pandemic. Following this, Ruben Mesa, MD, will discuss methods to improve community engagement in trial enrollment faced by underrepresented populations. Crystal Seldon, MD, will address how to mitigate financial toxicity related to study enrollment by improving access to social workers and financial resources available through charities and the government. Karyn Goodman, MD, MS, FASTRO, will speak on how to incorporate health disparities in clinical study design, which ultimately will lead to a more diverse trial enrollment. Dr. Sheldon, the moderator will close the session after the panel discussion.

Moderators:
Parul N. Barry, MD, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
Crystal Seldon, MD, Jackson Memorial Hospital

Speakers:

  • Ruben Mesa, MD, University of Texas Health, San Antonio
  • Crystal Seldon, MD, Jackson Memorial Hospital
  • Karyn Goodman, MD, MS, FASTRO, The Tisch Cancer Institute

Science Program on DEI

Oral Abstracts on DEIH

Below is the oral abstract on DEIH that will be featured at the 2022 ASTRO Annual Meeting. 

Scientific Session 24 - Advancing Health Equity Along the Cancer Care Continuum
Tuesday, October 25, 2021 | 4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.


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