Teresa L. Stewart, MS, CRCP
Teresa L. Stewart, MS, CRCP

The Helping to Enhance Research in Oncology (HERO) program will hold its tenth annual celebration event on Saturday, August 19. The event honors those on cancer clinical trials and raises awareness for the importance of cancer clinical trials. The event will offer public information sessions about clinical trials.

Clinical trials are research studies conducted in people. They help doctors and scientists learn more about how to diagnose, treat and prevent cancer.

Doctors watch people on clinical trials very carefully while gathering scientific data on the effects of new drugs and treatments. The data guide further development and may also help to gain approval from the Food and Drug Administration. Once a cancer drug or treatment receives FDA approval, it can become part of the standard care for that type of cancer.

The path to FDA approval can easily take more than a decade and cost more than $ 2.5 billion, according to the Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development. This time and expense includes discovering the drug or treatment, developing it for use in animals and people, testing it in animals and then testing it in people. The tests in people are completed in four stages of clinical trials. Often, more studies to monitor the drug’s effect are conducted after FDA approval. People taking part in clinical trials may get the new drug or treatment years before the FDA approves it.

People volunteer to take part in cancer clinical trials for many reasons. Some hope a clinical trial will help their own cancer journey. Many others wish to help future cancer patients. People in a cancer clinical trial may or may not get the new drug or treatment and the new drug or treatment may not work better than the current standard care. All the data collected from clinical trials helps to improve cancer treatment.

To honor the people who volunteer to take part in clinical trials, and therefore help to improve future cancer care, the New Mexico Cancer Care Alliance holds an annual event.

Saturday, August 19, 8:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.

Hotel Albuquerque
800 Rio Grande Blvd NW
Albuquerque

Teresa L. Stewart, MS, CRCP, New Mexico Cancer Care Alliance Executive Director, The University of New Mexico Comprehensive Cancer Center Director, Clinical Research Office and New Mexico NCORP Minority/Underserved, Administrator is available for interviews.

Contact: Dorothy Hornbeck, JKPR, 505-340-5929, dhornbeck@jameskorenchen.com