Program Information


The 2024 Multidisciplinary Head and Neck Cancers Symposium was a two-and-a-half-day meeting featuring interactive and case-based educational sessions that covered new multidisciplinary therapies, imaging, immunotherapy, treatment guidelines, supportive care and understanding disparities in head and neck cancer. A major focus was placed on the multidisciplinary nature of disease management and the incorporation of all treatment modalities to achieve best outcomes. Oral abstract and poster sessions highlighted cutting-edge science and evidence-based practice. Attendees were able to examine multidisciplinary approaches for treating head and neck cancer, as well as novel therapies that show promise in improving outcomes.

Statement of Need

The management of head and neck cancer (HNC) is rapidly evolving with newer modality of treatment available to patients. These modalities include minimally invasive surgery, newer radiation targeting techniques, novel targeted therapy and immunotherapy. In addition, the re-classification of patients with locoregionally advanced human papilloma (HPV)+ oropharyngeal carcinoma into earlier stage groups has engendered some confusion surrounding treatment planning. Many large clinical trials are maturing to establish new treatments or standard of care in HNC patients. Improving QOL in our patients who are living longer is a critical need. There is a need to review current guidelines for HNC survivorship care and identify areas of unmet need. It is imperative that the medical professionals involved in the care of HNC patients remain current in the expanding knowledge of this cancer. This meeting provided attendees the opportunity to gain exposure to the latest science in HNC. Attendees need to determine when and how the latest science will affect their day-to-day practice, and thus be able to narrow competency gaps across the management of different HNC subtypes and stages. They also need to understand how to reduce disparities in the care of cancer patients.

Program Objectives

Upon completion of this live activity, attendees should be able to do the following:

  • Explain the importance of multidisciplinary care in HNC and how to best apply it for optimal outcomes.
  • Describe key advances in systemic therapy, including targeted therapy and immunotherapy in HNC.
  • Discuss recent advances in minimally invasive surgery in HNC and when to apply it in treating early and locally advanced disease.
  • Illustrate how we can improve disparities in HNC care.
  • Determine the importance of interventions in survivorship clinics for long-term side effects.
  • Describe key advances in radiation therapy delivery, targeting and differences between various modalities, including novel treatment approaches such as proton and FLASH radiotherapy.
  • Discuss complex cases in HNC and how to best utilize current knowledge for decision making.
  • Manage toxicities related to the management of HNC.
  • Summarize key recent advances in HNC biology.
  • Summarize key recent advances in HNC imaging.
  • Discuss and implement standard treatment guidelines for various subtypes of HNCs.

Elements of Competence

This educational forum has been designed to narrow the competency gaps of: patient care, medical knowledge, practice-based learning and improvement, interpersonal skills and communication, professionalism, systems-based practice, patient-centered care, work in interdisciplinary teams, evidence-based practice, quality improvement, professional standing, commitment to lifelong learning, cognitive expertise, roles/responsibilities, interprofessional communication and teams and teamwork.

These are 16 of the 19 core competencies embraced by the American Board of Medical Specialties, the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, the Institute of Medicine, the American Board of Radiology and the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education.

Target Audience

This meeting was designed to meet the interests of medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, surgeons, physicists, nurses, diagnostic radiologists, pathologists, radiation therapists, radiation dosimetrists, speech language pathologists/scientists, dentists, oral surgeons, swallowing and speech therapists, audiologists, physical therapists, scientists, immunologist and rehabilitation specialists.




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