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Fox Chase Cancer Center Selected for Cancer Information Service Contract Award

PHILADELPHIA (October 15, 1999) -- Fox Chase Cancer Center has been selected as one of 14 organizations for contract award to operate the Cancer Information Service (CIS) of the National Cancer Institute (NCI), the government's lead agency for cancer research. Fox Chase will extend its serving area to include all of Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware, effective today.

Created in 1976, the CIS is the source for the latest, most accurate cancer information for the American public. The CIS provides up-to-date scientific information in understandable language, assists organizations in developing education efforts to reach people who do not have easy access to cancer information and services, and studies ways to promote healthy behaviors and communicate cancer information effectively.

"The CIS is a critical resource for the community, and we feel privileged to be able to continue to provide this service," said Paul F. Engstrom, M.D., senior vice president for population science at Fox Chase.

"We are also excited about several improvements to our program," said Linda Fleisher, Project Director. "We now have the latest telephone technology so that callers can speak to a cancer information specialist without experiencing a wait or a busy signal. In addition, we have a new feature where callers can hear recorded information about cancer 24 hours a day, seven days a week."

According to Fleisher, "Our staff provides two important services that most people probably don't know about. One is smoking cessation assistance, which our specially trained cancer information specialists provide on the phone. They can also send written self-help materials tailored to the needs of each caller. The second is our counseling and education program for women interested in risk counseling for inherited breast/cervical cancers and for callers wanting information and advice about genetic testing."

The CIS operates a toll-free telephone service (1-800-4-CANCER) where specially trained staff explain scientific information in understandable terms and answer calls in English, Spanish, and from the hearing impaired (1-800-332-8615). Information specialists provide thorough, personalized attention to each caller and answer questions about cancer prevention, screening, early detection, diagnosis, treatment and research.

The CIS also works in partnership with organizations that reach people in particular need of cancer information and services. Efforts are focused on reaching minorities (including African Americans, Hispanics, American Indians, Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Alaskan Natives) and people who are medically underserved (including older Americans and individuals living in communities lacking adequate health services or experiencing language, educational, financial or transportation barriers.) The CIS Partnership Program helps these organizations access appropriate NCI materials, reach those they serve with crucial information, plan cancer education programs and develop new or strengthen existing coalitions.

Each year, the CIS responds to more than 500,000 calls and assists 4,500 organizations nationwide with cancer education efforts.

Fox Chase Cancer Center is one of 36 National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer centers in the nation. The Center's activities include basic and clinical research; prevention, detection and treatment of cancer; and community outreach programs.

Fox Chase Cancer Center, part of the Temple University Health System, is one of the leading cancer research and treatment centers in the United States. Founded in 1904 in Philadelphia as one of the nation’s first cancer hospitals, Fox Chase was also among the first institutions to be designated a National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Center in 1974. Fox Chase researchers have won the highest awards in their fields, including two Nobel Prizes. Fox Chase physicians are also routinely recognized in national rankings, and the Center’s nursing program has received the Magnet recognition for excellence four consecutive times. Today, Fox Chase conducts a broad array of nationally competitive basic, translational, and clinical research, with special programs in cancer prevention, detection, survivorship, and community outreach.  For more information, call 1-888-FOX CHASE or (1-888-369-2427).

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