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Palliative care and end-of-life issues among cancer patients in Soweto, South Africa

Stephen G Emerson

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National Cancer Institute (NIH)
The Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center (HICCC) was designated as an NCI Cancer Center in 1972 and gained comprehensive status in 1979. The HICCC is a component of Columbia University Medical Center is associated with New York-Presbyterian Hospital (NYPH). During the period 2008-2013, CUMC and NYPH committed over $350 million for i) new research initiatives in basic, clinical and population science; ii) new and expanded facilities for laboratory research and clinical activities; iii) recruitment and program restructuring; and iv) support of the Center's administrative office. A new Director, Stephen G. Emerson MD, PhD was appointed in 2012 and given: i) authority over new facilities, including the Irving Cancer Research Center (ICRC), a 10-story building dedicated to cancer research, with state-of-the-art laboratories and clinical space in the Herbert Irving Pavilion (HIP); ii) a broad-based recruitment plan, which has already attracted 40 new faculty members to the HICCC; and iii) restructuring and expansion of the shared resources. The structure of the HICCC has been organized to increase cancer focus and interdisciplinary collaboration, and now includes 245 members from 22 Departments and 6 Schools, assigned to two Basic Research programs (Cancer Regulatory Networks and Cancer Genetics & Epigenetics), four Disease Specific programs (Breast Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Neuro-Oncology and Lymphoid Development & Malignancy), and two Population Science programs (Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention, Control & Disparities). The HICCC administers and supports a total of 15 Shared Resources. During the period 2008-2013, the HICCC research activities have been documented in a total of 3057 publications of which 17% are inter-programmatic and 15% are intra-programmatic. The current NCI funding base is $26M (total direct costs), a 13% increase over the 2007 NCI funding base of $23M (total direct costs). The Center is requesting CCSG support of $2,607,495 (total direct costs) for the initial budget period.

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