Alamo Advocate Program
Alamo Breast Cancer Foundation established the Patient Advocate Program in partnership with the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium (SABCS). ABCF is privileged to be associated with the SABCS, the largest single cancer conference in the world.
Hot Topics Mentor Sessions
The Hottest Ticket at SABCS
In conjunction with the intense learning experience to be had at the annual San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium (SABCS) patient advocates in attendance, are provided with an opportunity to interact with leading medical experts during ABCF’s three-day Hot Topics Mentor Sessions.
The panel of experts at the Mentor Sessions report on the most intriguing, valuable and/or controversial research presented that day and then take questions from the audience. The Mentor Sessions are the premier event for all advocates, weather they attend SABCS or not, providing them the opportunity to interact with recognized breast cancer experts in an intimate learning environment.
Project LEAD Advanced Topics
Alamo Breast Cancer Foundation and the National Breast Cancer Coalition Fund (NBCCF) partner for the Project LEAD Advanced Topics education class held at SABCS. This educational program, conducted by NBCCF, helps patient advocate to update their knowledge on clinical science and helps prepare them for the sessions at the SABCS.
American Association for
ABCF also partners with the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) to present an educational program for all patient advocates who attend the SABCS. This special session is held during lunch on Wednesday. This program is designed to help patient advocates better understand the basic science of breast cancer by holding a mini-science course with a short Year in Review.
FDA, Center for Excellence in Oncology
ABCF partners with AACR (Policy division) and the FDA to provide patient advocates an opportunity to hear new programs at the FDA oncology and to answer questions. This meeting is open to all patient advocates.
National Cancer Institute
Office of Advocacy Relations
The NCI OAR will explain the programs that the NCI for patient advocates and how patient advocates can become involved.
Alamo Breast Cancer Foundation established the Patient Advocate Program in partnership with the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium (SABCS).
ABCF is privileged to be associated with the SABCS, the largest single cancer conference in the world.
Why Patient Advocates are Necessary
Educated patient advocates provide a unique perspective which cannot be duplicated by others. They are the ones who ultimately receive health care services and along with their families, are required to engage and navigate the complexities of the health insurance system. They have no agenda in the scientific community other than looking for the best science; they have no conflict of interest. Their perspective cannot be duplicated by the doctors who care for them or the scientists who search for answers, even if these doctors and scientists too are patients. A lay advocate perspective is key to moving forward to help end breast cancer.
The SABCS and Patient Advocate Program usually takes place in early December of each year at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center in San Antonio, Texas, but this year we will be virtual. By attending this conference, patient advocates learn about the most recent breast cancer research so they can disseminate the information to their local organizations. ABCF is privileged to be associated with the SABCS, the largest single cancer conference in the world.
Background Information on the Patient Advocate Program at SABCS
The program was originally conceived when Drs. Charles Coltman and Kent Osborne observed the increasing number of patient advocates attending the SABCS to better understand the data affecting their advocacy efforts. In 1996, Drs. Coltman and Osborne approached the ABCF with the idea of a collaborative patient advocate program to be held annually in early December in conjunction with the SABCS. From their embryonic idea, the ABCF Patient Advocate Program was born.
Since 1997, ABCF has invited representatives from breast cancer patient advocate organizations from around the world to apply for scholarships (provided they meet the scientific criteria) in order to attend the December SABCS conference plus the education and mentor sessions that ABCF holds for all patient advocates attending. To date there have been over 800 applicants and ABCF has provided scholarships to 542 patient advocates.
Historically the feedback on the Patient Advocate Program has been outstanding. In 2006 the National Breast Cancer Coalition awarded the program the Best Practices in Breast Cancer Award for outstanding achievement and collaborative success. ABCF is very proud of this recognition and hopes to continue this level of impact on the advocacy community in the years to come. In addition, it is an honor that organizations in other countries have begun programs based on ABCF’s Patient Advocate Program.
Advocates in Numbers
Starting in 1998 to 2019 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium the Alamo Breast Cancer has been able to fund a total of 542 Patient Advocates worldwide!
Each of our symposium scholarship recipients has their own story and home organization, and we are proud to have been able to bring them to the SABCS throughout the years. As we approach our 22th-anniversary of the patient advocate program, we cannot help but think of how much this program has grown and where we will be in the next 20 years.
Thank you to all of our advocates and symposium committee members throughout the years. We cannot wait to see you again in the future and to welcome new advocates in the years to come.
Additional Advocacy Training Opportunities