Message from the Chairman

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February 2020

Yuichiro Doki, Chairman
Japan Society of Clinical Oncology


The Japan Society of Clinical Oncology (JSCO) is an academic organization where people from various medical professionals who provide cancer treatment to discuss current issues and prospects of cancer care.

 

- Message to the Public

Cancer is the leading cause of death in Japan. The cause of cancer is not completely understood and cannot be prevented by lifestyle changes alone. It is a disease that every citizen needs to consider cancer as their own problem. 

In the old days, the only way to treat cancer was to remove it surgically, and the disease was rarely cured radically. Nowadays, cancer can be cured in many cases if properly treated. This is due to the development of radiation therapy or drug treatment as well as surgery, but at the same time, treatment is becoming more diverse and requires more specialized knowledge and skills. 

In addition, as the number of cancer patients increases and the number of people who can be cured increases, there are new social issues that need to be addressed, such as how to alleviate the physical and emotional suffering caused by cancer and cancer treatment, and how to support people in their later lives.

In the past, cancer research has been divided into difference organs such as digestive organs, lungs or genital organs, and the methods of treatment have often discussed in terms of surgery, radiation and drugs, depending on the specialty of the physician. We take pride in the fact that JSCO is a society of physicians from many different fields who come together to provide the most appropriate treatment for patients, transcending these barriers. Furthermore, we are the society where not only doctors but also pharmacists, nurses and patients themselves are involving to participate in discussions to alleviate the pain or suffering of patients undergoing cancer treatment.

 

- Message to Medical Professionals

As a cancer related cross-sectional society, the role of JSCO is diverse. Cancer treatment can be broadly divided into drug therapy, radiation therapy and surgery. Multidisciplinary treatment combining these therapies has become popular. On the other hand, however, clinical practice has been mainly focused on cancer treatment by organ, and it has been pointed out that delays in the treatment of rare cancers. Recently, new cancer therapies such as molecular targeted therapy, genomic medicine, immunotherapy and robotic surgery are making remarkable progress. Cancer physicians are responsible for acquiring constantly new knowledge and techniques and returning them safely and effectively to clinical practice. As the number of cancer patients increases, specialists for each organ and each treatment method have grown. On the other hand, cancer physicians who face individual patients are required to have comprehensive and broad knowledge and skills. One of goal of the Society is to develop a general physician for cancer treatment who can use various treatments appropriately for each patient.

Establishing new cancer treatments in clinical practice is a major mission of the academic society. In order to raise awareness of cancer genomic medicine and immunotherapy, it will be increasingly important to collaborate with the Japan Cancer Association (JCA), which focuses on basic medicine, and the Japanese Society of Medical Oncology (JSMO), which focus on drug therapy. We believe that this collaboration among three cancer-related societies will enable new cancer therapies to be incorporated into general practice more quickly. 

International collaboration is also one of our major mission as academic society. We will further strengthen cooperation with the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) and the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) through program such as joint seminars, symposiums and exchange of international students. In Asia, we participate in the Federation of Asian Clinical Oncology (FACO) to promote international clinical research and strengthen academic cooperation through the Asian Oncology Society (AOS).

We will also continue to put more effort into activities to gain wider public acceptance of cancer patients. As a Certified Cancer Network Navigators, we will provide a wide range of medical personnel to study and provide close support to patients. We also would like to act as a bridge between health care providers and patients through Patients Advocacy Leadership (PAL) in order to widely receive the opinions of cancer survivors. Furthermore, by promoting cancer education to the public other than patients, we would like to increase the momentum for the cancer eradication in entire society.

JSCO is the largest academic society dedicated to cancer in Japan with more than 50 years of history and more than 17,000 members. We have a mission to further develop the expectations and credibility from various fields, which have been built on the hard work of successive chairman, officers and members.

Your support is greatly appreciated.